Come Monday, January 18, 2016, Nnamdi Kanu, Leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and Director of Radio Biafra, will be taken to court in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital by Department of State Security (DSS). But the Nigerian authority will be daft to take him to court instead of releasing him. The case has long gone beyond the courts.
Just yesterday, Friday, January 15, Biafrans trooped out in their millions all across Biafraland to demonstrate against the continued detention of their brother, Nnamdi Kanu. In that protest, three people were killed and thousands injured in the Port Harcourt axis of the demonstration by Nigerian Police. Those people went to the extent of laying their lives on the line because they knew that the issue was already beyond the courts. They needed a political solution.
Right now, any excuse should be contrived by government to release Kanu, a prisoner of conscience. Taking him to court on Monday would demean the Nigerian Judiciary further and damage Nigeria more than has already been done. How will Biafrans view it if the court turns around and refuses to release him? Thrice, the courts had previously released him, and thrice Buhari and his henchmen in government refused to obey the courts. Will anybody blame Biafrans if they refuse to accept a verdict of Kanu being detained any further? How will anybody view it if Biafrans refuse to obey the court as well? Buhari should release Nnamdi Kanu now!
Kanu is a prisoner of conscience and has done nothing wrong. He does not deserve what he is getting. It is his captors, especially the chief captor that are the criminals. Buhari was the one that overthrew a democratically elected government in 1983. He has not been punished for that. Instead he was rewarded with the presidency of the country, even when he was not qualified for it, and even when he lied on oath about it. Buhari was part of the murderers that slaughtered innocent women, children and the old during the Biafran/Nigeria war of 1967 – 1970. He has not been brought to book for that. So why are good people sitting back and saying nothing while a known law-breaker is persecuting an innocent man. Are Nigerians not aware that wickedness and injustice thrive only when good people do (or say) nothing?
Buhari in office has conducted himself worse than a bull in a china shop. In just eight months of becoming Nigeria’s ruler, he has landed the country at the threshold of a war. This knot of anarchy that he has knotted around the country must be loosened before it explodes. The first step in loosening it should be by him releasing Nnamdi Kanu now!
It is on record that Biafrans have conducted themselves well in this matter, even in the face of extreme provocation. They have peacefully demonstrated in their thousands and their millions, yet no single misdemeanor was recorded. All over the world, embassies and world governments have seen them demonstrate in their capitals without breaching the peace.
As things stand now, Nigeria is already locked down; nothing is moving. Anyone who thinks that any meaningful progress or discussion can still hold in Nigeria under the current atmosphere that Buhari has created will have to think again. Right now, Biafrans are now looking for a way out of the hatred Nigeria has continued to visit on them. They may not take it lying low if their brother is not released. On the other hand, Nigerian rulers are looking for ways of tightening the noose further around their neck, to shut them up forever. But catharsis is around the corner; the day may not be long. Nigerians must impress it upon Buhari to release Nnamdi Kanu now!
Nigeria’s leaders cannot continue to raise side issues trying to cloud the real issues of Biafra. Just recently, Nigeria’s former ruler, Olusegun Obasanjo told a gullible audience that the issue of Biafra has long been settled and that those campaigning for it were individuals merchandising with the name. His audience did not ask him how come people would still be willing to part with their hard-earned money to resurrect an issue that has long been settled.
Before Obasanjo, a certain Lamido Sanusi, Emir of Kano, told another gullible audience that the country might be visited with a coup because a section were threatening violence as was the case in 1966. But his audience could not ask him why it is only in Nigeria that self-determination translates to violence.
For the avoidance of doubt, Biafra is a demand by a group of indigenous people who want freedom to be who God created them to be, and it is their right under the Indigenous Peoples’ Charter of the United Nations (UN), 2006. Biafra is the demand of a people who existed thousands of years before Britain created Nigeria and forced them into it. Biafra of today is the demand of people who know that the created entity called Nigeria has expired in 2014; and they want to go back to who they were before the British came. Biafra is the demand of people who are not Nigerians and not protected by it, so they want out for a separate existence. That, in a nutshell, is what Nnamdi Kanu is asking for – and that is not a crime. Buhari should release Nnamdi Kanu now!