Stop holding Nnamdi Kanu hostage – HURIWA tells Buhari

Patami: There's nothing like a repentant terrorist - Nnamdi Kanu

Hu­man Rights Writers Association of Nigeria, (HURIWA), Civil rights advocacy group has asked President Muhamma­du Buhari to release Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indige­nous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The group demanded Kanu’s release in compliance with the unambig­uous judgment of the Court of Appeal instead of watching his health deteriorate to such a poor state inside DSS cell.

HURIWA’s National Coordi­nator, Comrade Emmanuel On­wubiko, in a statement on Monday asked whether the Jibrin of Sudan comment by Kanu was the rea­son the President has chosen to deny Kanu bail despite that the appellate court granted him the same.

Buhari, in a documentary shown Friday night, had said he did not find it funny that many of his country’s citizens believed the rumour that he was dead and had been replaced with a looka­like named Jibrin who was from Sudan.

“Yes! People said I am some­body from Sudan. I didn’t bother with the name. Nigerians have mischievous ways of explaining themselves,” Buhari said.

When asked if he found the rumour funny, Mr Buhari said: “No. It’s not funny. Because those who made those statements, they just want to be cheeky. They want to distract attention from the main issue.”

HURIWA’s Onwubiko said the confession by Buhari on the Jibrin of Sudan comment by Kanu which gained traction during the President’s first term when he spent months attending to his health in the United King­dom could be one of the chief reasons the President decided to keep Kanu in the custody of the Department of State Services 19 months after he was arrested and brought into the country from Kenya.

Onwubiko added that at a meeting with Ebonyi State Stakeholders’ Forum held at the Government House in Abakali­ki in May, Buhari had said a po­litical solution to Kanu’s travails was impossible and insisted that only the court will decide his fate, noting that 19 months after his arrest, the administration had failed to free Kanu, despite the decision of the Appeal Court.

“With Buhari’s latest con­fession on the story of Jibrin of Sudan, one begins to ask what is fueling his hatred for Nnamdi Kanu so much so that he reject an Appellate judgment freeing Nnamdi Kanu and has remained intransigence even when Nnamdi Kanu’s health has deteriorated dangerously?

“One of Kanu’s lawyers, Aloy Ejimakor, on Saturday said the IPOB leader needed heart sur­gery for a valve replacement. It is only proper for the Federal Gov­ernment to release the detained agitator so he can get emergency medical attention,” Onwubiko said.

HURIWA condemns the intransigence of the President Muhammadu Buhari-led gov­ernment to respect the clear, unambiguous and straightfor­ward verdict of the Appellate Court quashing the charges of terrorism instituted by the Federal Attorney General and minister of justice Abubakar Malami who has also on many occasions used the media of mass communication to demo­nise Mazi Nnamdi Kanu who is clearly a prisoner of conscience. President Muhammadu Bu­hari’s administration probably wants the South East of Nigeria to go up in firestorm and crises that will be precipitated by any eventuality that may come the way of Nnamdi Kanu whose health situation has degenerat­ed due to criminal negligence by this federal government of President Muhammadu Buhari. President Muhammadu Buhari should release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu now.