FOLLOWING the plan to revoke the bail condition given to the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, has vowed to resist any plan by the Federal Government to re-arrest him, the group has condemned the move.
The group described the move as “a dangerous path of intimidation and smacks of state-sponsored terrorism designed to silence free speech.”
This came as the pan-Igbo group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, faulted the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malamin, over plans to revoke Kanu’s bail, as it said the IPOB leader was free to hold any view however displeasing to anyone.
In a statement by its publicity secretary, Emma Powerful, on Saturday, IPOB said whatever issues government had against the group and its leader should be presented before Justice Binta Nyako on October 17, when the matter would resume in court.
The group also called for the arrest of the Arewa Youths who issued quit notice to Ndigbo in the North, saying it would not accept a situation where there “is one law for Arewa North and another for the rest” of the country.
“Merely asserting that Kanu is a threat to the Nigerian government is not a crime unless accompanied by legally definable crime or offence.
“Before Muhammadu Buhari-led administration decides to make a move to arrest our leader, he must first go to court to obtain a court order or else it will be resisted by millions of IPOB members.
“As soon as the illegal, unconstitutionally draconian conditions of the bail were spelt out by Justice Binta Nyako, we knew such a day would come when they will use the cover of broken bail condition to launch an attack.
“But we are assuring him that our leader, Mazi Kanu is spiritually and mentally prepared for this epic battle. He is not afraid of being locked up without trial as long as his personal physician will be allowed to visit and attend to his medical needs.
“In dictatorial and totalitarian regimes such as we have under this APC government, outspoken critics are often imprisoned without trial. So, this undemocratic and illegal approach to resolving the thorny issue of Biafra self-determination championed by IPOB is to be expected.
“Our teams of local and international lawyers are following the developments closely. That Nigeria is dangerously close to the brink of collapse today is a direct result of the first illegal arrest and detention of Kanu, arresting him again will plunge Nigeria into an unimaginable crisis.
“Should Justice Nyako choose to listen to Buhari and revoke the bail application granted Kanu during his appearance on the 17th of October 2017, IPOB will ensure 100 per cent compliance with the Anambra State election boycott order. Those advising Buhari must caution him that he stands to be remembered as the dictator that crashed Nigeria.
“It is quite understandable that our leader Kanu is the arrow-head and mouthpiece of the resurgent Biafra movement, re-arresting and keeping him in detention without trial does not and cannot change anything, instead it will hasten the calamitous uncontrolled collapse of Nigeria.
“Those politicians goading and encouraging him along this path of destruction must learn from history. IPOB leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu cannot be locked up indefinitely without trial because the consequences of such an action will most certainly bring Nigeria to a chaotic end,” the statement said.
In a statement by the President-General of Ohanaeze, Chief John Nwodo, the pan-Igbo group said the move to revoke Kanu’s bail was a wrong approach by the Attorney-General of the Federation,” urging the AGF to respect his office.
The statement read in parts: “It has just been brought to my notice that the Attorney-General of the Federation has approached the courts to incarcerate Kalu for flouting his bail conditions.
“I am amazed that the distinguished attorney is prepared to contest the superiority of the provisions of the constitution on fundamental human rights of freedom of movement and freedom of association over an erroneous judicial proclamation violating those rights.
“I am equally miffed by the audacity with which the Attorney-General displays his bias without regard to his oath of office.
“A few hours ago, under the watchful eyes of the chairman of the Northern Governors Forum and in total defiance of the Head of State’s proclamation of the rights of a citizen of Nigeria to live anywhere in Nigeria and to do business anywhere in Nigeria, the Arewa Youths, pretending to withdraw their quit notice, gave qualifications to the Head of State’s proclamation, issuing conditions for enjoyment of citizenship status.
“These same Arewa youths are supposed to have been arrested on the orders of the Governor of Kaduna State and the Inspector General of Police for acts of treason, conversion and sedition.
As the chief law officer of the Federation, the Attorney-General looks the other way. He did not go to court to seek an order of arrest or prosecution.
“I and some Igbo leaders have differences of opinion with Nnamdi on a number of issues. We have been insulted and abused by Radio Biafra, but we concede them their right to differ from us. We concede them their nature to be exuberant as youths but we cannot be judgmental about their rights,’’ the statement said.