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Politics of Wednesday, 25 January 2023


Kanu's release plea was not politically motivated - Soludo's aide to critics

Chukwuma Soludo and Nnamdi Kanu Chukwuma Soludo and Nnamdi Kanu

Christian Aburime, the press secretary to Anambra Governor Chukwuma Soludo has stated that the plea for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu's unconditional release from prison was not made for political reasons.

According to Aburime, Soludo's demand for Kanu's release resulted from a sincere wish to end the persistent insecurity in the South East.

A few days ago, Soludo demanded Kanu's release during an All Progressives Grand Alliance campaign event and also declared that he was willing to act as his surety.

People in the South-East have reacted angrily to his remarks and have suggested that the Governor's decision was politically motivated as the elections draw near.

Aburime, however, in an interview with The PUNCH on Tuesday, January 24, claimed that the governor requested Kanu's release because he had noticed that the IPOB leader needed to address the people of the South-East in order to reduce regional insecurity.

He expressed concern that the public had interpreted the governor's "genuine" call with incorrect political connotations.

Additionally, he made it clear that Soludo spoke in his capacity as the governor of Anambra State and that he had not discussed the issue with any other South-East governors.

According to Aburime, the governor noticed that after the IPOB leader's arrest, the level of insecurity in the area had only gotten worse.

Aburime maintained that the Labour Party's (LP) failure to make payment led to the signage agency taking down their campaign billboards.

He said, “The call for the release of Kanu by Soludo is borne out of genuine desire and intention to remove insecurity from the South-East. You will recall that insecurity has been a major problem in the region since Kanu was detained.

“You will observe that people have been dying every day and you hear about killings here and there in the region. The governor, with the help of President Muhammadu Buhari, has deployed what is called a kinetic approach to fighting the insecurity in the region. But he (Soludo) found out that it is about time to also adopt the non-kinetic approach, which is to bring the critical stakeholders, like Kanu, around the table and discuss the issue of insecurity with a view to finding a permanent solution.

“And he is now saying that Kanu should be released to be part of the people that should be called to the roundtable to have a discussion on insecurity and the governor is saying that the Federal Government should release him unconditionally so he can speak to the people of the South-East.

“And if he cannot be released unconditionally, the governor said he is willing to stand as his surety. That is a genuine call, it has nothing to do with political motives or selfish interest. It is a genuine call intended to bring sustainable peace to the region.

“Soludo recognised the fact that the court has set Kanu free and he said if the federal government cannot release him unconditionally due to some considerations, he is willing to offer himself as surety and to provide him anytime the Federal Government wants him.