The founding father of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, and high leaders of his group have gone into hiding following Friday’s declaration by the Nigerian Army that IPOB and different Pro-Biafran teams have been terrorists organisations.
Investigations by SUNDAY PUNCH on Saturday revealed that Kanu and his high lieutenants had ‘disappeared’ from his nation dwelling in Afaraukwu close to Umuahia and different locations he often visited.
His father, Eze Israel Kanu, is the normal ruler of the city.
Some IPOB members, who spoke on situations of anonymity defined that Kanu and others have been suggested to go underground following the declaration by the Army and the choice of the South-East governors to proscribe actions of pro-Biafra agitators within the area.
An IPOB member mentioned, “We have to use knowledge to no matter we’re doing. We have realised that there’s a grand conspiracy towards Kanu and different high leaders of our group.
“Just think about barely few hours after the Nigerian navy declared members of IPOB and different pro-Biafran teams as terrorists, our personal governors got here up with their very own outright ban of our actions.
“This positively will give the troopers and different safety companies the chance to arrest our chief and mount a lethal clampdown on all IPOB members. So, it’s higher to function from a hideout for now.”
I can’t disclose my brother’s location — Kanu’s brother
When contacted on telephone on Saturday, Kanu’s youthful brother merely recognized as Fine Boy, refused to inform SUNDAY PUNCH the place his brother was, including that solely the IPOB chief may disclose his hiding place.
He mentioned, “Only my brother can inform Nigerians the place he’s, I can’t. I don’t know why the Army ought to name IPOB a terrorist organisation, it’s out of their desperation to arrest Nnamdi and frustrate the Biafran battle. We have petitioned the United Nations and the European Union.
“The world is aware of that IPOB is a non-violent organisation, we don’t carry arms, we don’t kill, and we imagine violence can by no means remedy any downside.
“Nnamdi will quickly disclose his present location and IPOB may even react to the proscription of the group by the South-East governors’ discussion board.”
Security companies comb South-East for Kanu, others
SUNDAY PUNCH investigations on Saturday additionally confirmed that safety companies have been combing the South-East area in the hunt for Kanu.
Findings by considered one of our correspondents in Abuja confirmed that the safety companies had been directed to arrest Kanu and different leaders of his group.
The directive to arrest the IPOB leaders was mentioned to have been communicated to the leaders of the safety companies deployed within the area.
The safety companies that got the directive, in accordance with investigations, embrace the navy, the police and the Department of State Services.
It was gathered that the federal government felt that it might be harmful to go away Kanu a free man until the following adjourned date when his case would come up at an Abuja Federal High Court.
His case is claimed to be developing later in October.
A high safety sources mentioned, “We are severely in search of him. He has numerous issues to clarify to the federal government regarding his statements, actions and actions.
“We can’t sit by and permit the safety scenario within the nation to be compromised to the extent that a person shall be difficult the Federal Government.
“Government has to do one thing about a person that’s recruiting younger individuals, giving them uniforms, arming them and referring to them as a secret service.
“We have been seizing arms and ammunitions on the ports; we additionally must know what they have been meant for.
“This is somebody who unilaterally mentioned there could be no election in Anambra State and a few individuals need us to permit him proceed together with his actions? No, we have to develop above our ethnic and tribal sentiments.”
South-East govs disloyal — IPOB
IPOB on Saturday evening condemned the South East Governor’s Forum over its proscription of IPOB’s actions. Its media and publicity secretary, Emma Powerful, mentioned the velocity with which the governors introduced the proscription of IPOB actions confirmed that the governors have been disloyal
IPOB mentioned, “We need to learn the way the governors who have no idea the foundations of IPOB, would make such a press release once they know that IPOB had staged 297 peaceable protests and rallies each at dwelling and in Diaspora with no single document of violence or crime.
“With the document on floor, IPOB below Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, is likely one of the most peaceable organised freedom combating group on the earth at present. It is harmful that the governors who’re the chief safety officers of their respective states within the zone would determine at hand over their individuals to the enemies who have been out to kill, maim and destroy due to their egocentric causes. We are additionally conscious that late Chief Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu and General Philip Effiong protected their individuals through the first pogrom and ethnic cleaning from 1966’to 1970.
“These governors and their collaborators are within the forefront to get rid of our chief, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and different peaceable members of IPOB. It is on document that IPOB actions are peaceable for the reason that inception and no one can show the place and the way IPOB actions grew to become violent over evening.
“The solders introduced in to get rid of or homicide our chief and IPOB members, together with the harmless civilians throughout Biafra land, are nonetheless going from home to deal with choosing anybody suspected to be IPOB or seen with any Biafra insignia. IPOB below Kanu should stay a nonviolent group within the pursuit for Biafra freedom, regardless of the excessive handedness meted towards IPOB members and our chief.”
Enforcement of ban will trigger bloodshed, says MASSOB
The Movement for the Actualisation of the Sovereign State of Biafra, on Saturday mentioned the South-East Governors Forum has no powers to proscribe the actions of pro-Biafra teams within the zone.
It warned that any try by the governors to implement the proscription will result in lack of lives.
MASSOB mentioned the choice taken by the governors can not stand.
National Director of Information, MASSOB, Samuel Edeson, in an interview with SUNDAY PUNCH in Enugu, described the pro-Biafra teams as unbiased associations of individuals whose rights to self dedication are backed by the United Nation’s Charter.
Edeson argued that the governors can solely implement the proscription after amending the legal guidelines of South-East states to criminalise self dedication.
According to him, “The governors mentioned they’ll implement the proscription, the one method they will do that’s by utilizing the shoot-on-sight strategy which was began by the Buhari administration. In that case individuals will die.
“The reality is that MASSOB was by no means registered below the Nigerian authorities; neither did we register below the Corporate Affairs Commission.
“We are an unbiased organisation, we’re freedom fighters — there’s nowhere on the earth the place a self dedication group is proscribed.
“It (proscription) can not stand; no one can drive us away from our father’s land.”
Ohanaeze Ndigbo additionally faulted Nigeria military’s declaration of IPOB as a terrorist organisation. Ohanaeze mentioned, “IPOB is just not a terrorist group going by extant nationwide and worldwide legal guidelines, particularly the terrorist prevention Act 2011, as amended in 2015.”
It nevertheless praised the South-East Governors for stopping battle within the area. In a communique learn by the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief Nnia Nwodo, the group condemned the navy operation within the zone and urged the military to terminate the train henceforth.
No going again on IPOB, others’ proscription – Govs
The Chairman of the South-East Governors Forum who can also be the Governor of Ebonyi State, David Umahi, has attributed the proscription of the actions of the Indigenous People of Biafra to the agitation for secession by the group.
Umahi spoke in Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, on Saturday whereas briefing journalists on the decision of his colleagues on the actions of IPOB and the “Operation Python Dance” launched by the navy within the South –East.
The governor insisted that the choice could be enforced within the 5 states.
He mentioned, “The Igbo usually are not in search of secession presently, it’s not the answer to our downside. If we would like Biafra, it’s the leaders of the South-East that will be within the fore-front of it, not another individual.
“The beliefs and beliefs of IPOB have gone past the preliminary considered IPOB leaders. Anybody can agitate nevertheless it have to be devoid of insults from any sources.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has proven maturity within the dealing with of insults, there have to be disagreement, however such disagreement should not degenerate to insulting the President of the nation.”
Umahi mentioned there was no method the South-East governors would have supported the actions of IPOB.
He mentioned, “We have the individuals’s mandate, our process is to keep away from shedding of blood and guarantee a peaceable existence of our individuals.
“We had invited Nnamdi Kanu on two events, and he honoured our invitation. We advised him that he can’t be insulting President Buhari, it’s not the answer to the issue of the South-East geo-political zone of the nation.”
On the allegations of torture allegedly dedicated by troopers concerned within the “Operation Python Dance” in Umuahia and Aba, Umahi mentioned the South-East Governors have arrange a committee to research all of the allegations.
He mentioned, “We should reiterate that any physique discovered culpable will face the complete wrath of the legislation and be prosecuted.”
Obasanjo’s recommendation on Kanu, private opinion — Presidency
The Presidency has mentioned that former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s current touch upon the Biafran agitation is his opinion.
Obasanjo was reported on Friday to have suggested Buhari to ask IPOB leaders for negotiations.
When requested on Saturday if Buhari would heed Obasanjo’s recommendation, the President’s Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Mr. Femi Adesina, mentioned Obasanjo’s remark was not a legislation or a rule.
He mentioned, “It is an opinion that he has proffered and while you proffer an opinion, it’s not a legislation or a rule. It is now left for the one who was given the recommendation to contemplate it.”
Junaid, Balarabe berate Obasanjo
Meanwhile, two northern elder statesmen, Dr Junaid Muhammed and Alhaji Balarabe Musa, have disagreed with Obasanjo over his feedback on IPOB agitations, saying that the retired common lacked credibility.
The former president was quoted to have mentioned the deployment of troops within the South- East was not the answer to the Biafran agitation. He additionally mentioned Buhari ought to invite IPOB leaders for negotiations.
Muhammed, a Second Republic lawmaker, mentioned, “The assertion credited to Obasanjo, if he, certainly, mentioned so, have to be condemned by all right-thinking Nigerians. It is irresponsible and demoralising to the military and the police who’re confronting terrorists wherever they’re.
“It confirms that the ex-president is a hypocrite who’s enjoying video games with even the sacred beliefs of our nationwide existence.
“Obasanjo with out recourse to parliament deployed Nigerian armed forces to Zaki Biam in Benue State and Odi in Bayelsa State.
“He didn’t search any viewers with these victims, and it’s mischievous that the previous president has now give you some recommendation.”
Also, Balarabe Musa, former governor of previous Kaduna State, mentioned, “Obasanjo is just not credible sufficient to offer such recommendation. We are speaking about an issue, however what did Obasanjo do when he was there?”
Similarly, the Arewa Consultative Forum on Saturday applauded northerners for sustaining peace and understanding within the face of provocation within the aftermath of the conflict between the Nigerian Army and IPOB
The northern physique by its National Publicity Secretary, Muhammad Ibrahim Biu in a press release made accessible to journalists in Kaduna, additionally condemned the conflict which led to the killing of some northerners in Rivers State.
The group recommended the South-East governors on the ban positioned on IPOB.
Afenifere seeks dialogue
On its half, the pan-Yoruba socio-cultural group, Afenifere, endorsed the decision by Obasanjo that Buhari ought to negotiate with IPOB.
Afenifere mentioned the Biafran agitations may solely be resolved by dialogue, noting that after the civil battle, the nation nonetheless engaged in dialogue for nationwide integration.
The Afenifere spokesman, Yinka Odumakin, mentioned no step or effort that might douse the strain throughout the nation and convey peace to the polity was an excessive amount of to take.
He mentioned, “We are for dialogue in Afenifere and assist any effort that might decrease pressure within the nation, efforts that will convey concord and understanding.”
CAN president asks Buhari to dialogue with Kanu
The President of Christian Association of Nigeria Rev. Samson Ayokunle, has suggested the Federal Government to ask the agitators for talks with a view to discovering a long-lasting answer to the disaster.
He mentioned, ‘’The finest option to win is to have a dialogue desk whereby the Federal Government ought to maintain on to the superior argument. That is what can transfer us ahead.”
Ayokunle, who can also be the President, Nigeria Baptist Conference, mentioned violent agitations would additional compound the issues going through Nigeria.
The cleric spoke on the inauguration of the brand new gate of the Bowen University, Iwo in Osun State, and inauguration of a radio station on the campus, 101.9 FM.
Ayokunle subsequently urged IPOB and different teams to embrace dialogue, saying that was the one method their grievances might be made identified legitimately.
IPOB actions inside civil order — INC
The National President of Ijaw National Congress, the apex sociocultural umbrella physique for the Ijaw individuals, Dr. Boma Obuoforibo, on Saturday mentioned the usage of pressure to silence agitating youths within the South Eastern a part of the nation wouldn’t result in peace.
Obuoforibo mentioned though the Ijaw individuals don’t assist the decision for secession, the IPOB members by their actions, had not degenerated to the purpose of being branded as a terrorist group.
He mentioned, “The structure solely permits police to deal with civil issues. The military’s major accountability is for exterior aggression besides the scenario has degenerated to a stage when the military is suggested to return in. Sending the military to a civilian inhabitants is just not allowed.”
The Ijaw Youth Congress additionally appealed to Buhari to retract the appellation of terrorists not too long ago given to IPOB members.
The IYC maintained that the appropriate to peaceable agitation or meeting or peaceable quest to self-determination didn’t quantity to an act of terrorism.
Making reference to the Terrorism Prevention Act, 2011 as amended, the spokesman of the group, Mr. Henry Iyalla, mentioned it was improper of the Nigerian Army to tag IPOB members as terrorists with out following the dictates of the Act.
Security beef up in Bauchi, calm in Ebonyi, Enugu, Owerri
Security has been beefed up in Bauchi State in view of the rebellion and the conflict between troopers and IPOB members which has prompted pressure in lots of cities throughout the North.
The growth, SUNDAY PUNCH learnt, was to forestall any breakdown of legislation and order within the State.
Our correspondent noticed motion of mixed groups of armed safety companies in Hilux automobiles numbering over 20.
The workforce comprised personnel of the Nigerian Army, Nigeria Police Force, Nigerian Air Force, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Department of State Services and the Federal Road Safety Corps.
The Police Public Relations Officer, Bauchi State Command, Kamal Abubakar, mentioned the command was battle-ready.
He mentioned, “In view of the continued safety scenario within the nation particularly the operation within the South-East and safety stories coming from neighbouring Plateau State on pockets of crises, the Bauchi State Command is prepared.”
But residents of Abakaliki, the Ebonyi State capital, have been going about their professional and lawful companies with none worry of molestation.
Abakaliki, Afikpo, Onueke and Ohaozara remained calm and haven’t witnessed the presence of navy personnel for the reason that navy present of may began within the Sout-East.
One of our correspondents noticed on Saturday that there was nonetheless a heavy presence of troopers and policemen at strategic areas in Umuahia, the Abia State capital.
On Eket Street, the place the Umuahia Central Mosque is positioned, troopers have been seen guarding the constructing with a navy van stationed at one finish of the highway.
Turkey disowns citizen supporting Biafran agitation
The Embassy of the Republic of Turkey in Nigeria has mentioned it was dedicated to the territorial integrity and political unity of the nation.
It denied supporting the secessionist agitations within the nation and additional disowned a Turkish citizen, Abdülkadir Erkahraman, who has been drumming assist for the Biafran agitation.
He has additionally posted movies on-line accusing President Buhari of committing genocide.
But the mission in a press release on Saturday mentioned Erkahraman is just not a Turkish diplomat or an official consultant of the Turkish authorities.
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