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General News of Tuesday, 17 January 2023


IPOB, Kanu’s family differ on Soludo’s offer to stand surety

Anambra state Governor Chukwuma Soludo and Nnamdi Kanu, Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra Anambra state Governor Chukwuma Soludo and Nnamdi Kanu, Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and the family of its leader Nnamdi Kanu yesterday disagreed on the offer by Anambra State Governor Charles Soludo to stand surety for him.

Soludo, at the weekend, said he was ready to stand surety if the detained IPOB leader could not be released unconditionally.

The governor said: “I am making a passionate appeal to the Federal Government to release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu unconditionally.

“If he cannot be released unconditionally, I want him released to me and I will stand surety for him.

“We need Nnamdi Kanu in the roundtable conversation to discuss the insecurity in the Southeast.

“We must end insecurity in the Southeast and we need Nnamdi Kanu to be around.”

Kanu’s brother, Kanunta, expressed the family’s gratitude to the Anambra governor.

He tweeted: “@CCSoludo Governor Anambra State. The Kanu family is grateful.”

But IPOB said while it appreciated Soludo’s gesture, its leader deserved to be released unconditionally rather than granted bail.

It said the governor’s offer came long after the Court of Appeal, Abuja, on October 13, 2022, discharged and acquitted the IPOB leader.

The group’s spokesman, Emma Powerful, said in a statement: “It is important therefore, to clarify that our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu has no any form of indictment or even charge pending against him today before any court by the authority of this judgment.

“The issue of granting bail or otherwise does not arise by any stretch of consideration or imagination because it is the Federal Government that is today in breach of this order of a superior court of competent jurisdiction.

“It is to be emphasised further that Onyendu, who was discharged on October 13, 2022, by the Court of Appeal does not have any need for surety because there is no charge hanging on his neck today.

“We have gone beyond the issue of surety or no surety.

“Every genuine call/demand in the prevailing circumstance should be firmly directed at calling out on the Federal Government of Nigeria to immediately obey the order for the unconditional release of Onyendu made by its court.”

Also yesterday, Kanu thanked Soludo for the gesture.

His special counsel, Aloy Ejimakor, tweeted: “I just concluded a visitation with #MNK. He directed me to publicly convey his appreciation to Gov. Chukwuma Soludo for the political courage he displayed by demanding his unconditional release.

“On a sad note, he told me that his nutrition The Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) backed Soludo on the need for the Federal Government to release Kanu unconditionally.

Its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement, said constructive dialogue rather than the use of force was critical to achieving a peaceful election.

“We urge President Buhari to hearken to the voice of reason and release Kanu now to stop the heightened threats to lives, and property of citizens of Southeast and to open up vistas of constructive dialogues towards peaceful polls all over Nigeria, and especially in the Southeast,” the group said.

A lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, argued that Soludo cannot legally stand surety for Kanu because should he violate the bail terms, he (the governor) cannot be arrested or held to account due to the immunity he has.

Kanu, who was tried on terrorism charges, is in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).

The Federal Government has appealed against the Court of Appeal judgment freeing him.