The Federal Government on Thursday said it would go after highly-placed Nigerians and other collaborators of the Independent People of Biafra leader, Nnamdi Kanu.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, who stated this at a press briefing in Abuja, said irrespective of the collaborators’ standing in country, they would all face the full wrath of the law for challenging the nation’s sovereignty.
Mohammed said this as the lead counsel to the IPOB leader, Aloy Ejimakor, in an interview with one of our correspondents, disclosed that he had written the British High Commission, complaining about Kanu’s arrest and extradition.
He also lamented that despite writing the Department of State Services, he had not been allowed access to the IPOB leader.
Kanu, who is facing trial for treasonable felony, jumped bail in 2017 and fled the country for the UK when soldiers stormed his parents’ residence at Afaraukwu, Abia State.
The Minister for Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, however, announced on Tuesday, that he had been rearrested through the collaborative efforts of Nigerian intelligence and security services.
The Abia State indigene, who is also a British citizen, was thereafter taken before Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court, Abuja, where an application for his remand in DSS custody was granted.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Mohammed, on Thursday, said, “None of Kanu’s collaborators, irrespective of their standing in society will be spared.
“They will all face the full wrath of the law for their activities that challenge our nation’s sovereignty and threaten its unity. No one, no matter how highly placed, is bigger than the country.”
The minister also faulted those calling for fair trial for the IPOB leader, saying he jumped bail when he was granted one.
The minister added, “It is interesting that many are suddenly calling for a fair trial for Kanu as if he didn’t get one before he decided to jump bail and flee.
“However, I can assure you that the fair deal that Kanu denied many of the victims of the violence which he instigated through his broadcasts and tweets will not be denied him.”
Mohammed claimed that Kanu lived a flamboyant lifestyle before he was arrested.
Kanu lived five-star life – Lai Mohammed
“It will interest Nigerians to know that for over two years, our security and intelligence agencies were on the trail of the proscribed IPOB leader as he lived a five-star life across several countries, travelling on chartered private jets, living in luxury apartments and turning out in designing clothes and shoes.
“Of course, as we all saw, he was wearing clothes made by Fendi, a luxury Italian fashion brand, when he was arrested,” the minister said.
He refused to give details of how and where Kanu was re-arrested.
He however admitted that the re-arrest was made possible by the diligent efforts of security and intelligence agencies in collaboration with undisclosed countries.
He described Kanu’s re-arrest as one of the most classic operations in the world.
He added, “There have been speculations on how this re-arrest was pulled off and in which country the hitherto fugitive leader of the proscribed IPOB was nabbed.
“What we can tell you, once again, is that the re-arrest was made possible by the diligent efforts of our security and intelligence agencies, in collaboration with countries with which we have obligations. We continue to respect and honour the obligations.”
IPOB fumes over Uhuru Kenyetta’s role
But IPOB expressed displeasure over the role allegedly played by the Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyetta, in what it described as the unlawful arrest of Kanu.
The group, which said its investigations showed that Kenyetta was instrumental to the unlawful arrest of Kanu, observed, “The treacherous action of Uhuru kenyatta against Nnamdi Kanu and Biafrans at large is a clear violation of the 1949 Geneva Convention, and United Nations Code.”
The secessionist group stated this in a statement signed by its Director of Media and Publicity, a copy of which was made available.
It stated, “Based on our preliminary findings, President Uhuru Kenyetta was very instrumental to the abduction of our leader in Kenya. The treacherous action of Uhuru Kenyatta against Nnamdi Kanu and Biafrans at large is a clear violation of the 1949 Geneva Convention, and United Nations Code.
“As we continue with our investigations into this crime with a view to unmasking all the collaborators, we announce the following interim actions until further notice:
“We call on all Biafrans both home and in the Diaspora to boycott travels with Kenya Air Lines; to immediately stop patronising any product made in Kenya; and to boycott any business dealings with Kenyans. We cannot be relating friendly with anyone collaborating with our oppressors to keep us in perpetual slavery!”
On his part, the Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, advised the Federal Government to ensure that rule of law and due process was followed in the prosecution of Kanu.
Governor Wike, who made this assertion during an interview on Arise Television on Thursday, explained that irrespective of the differences the arrested IPOB leader had with Rivers State Government, he suggested that due process must be followed in his prosecution.