The Punch

‘Govt tormenting, dehumanisi­ng Kanu because he’s Igbo’


court based on the evidence available to us on what they did to him. That will be settled at the Internatio­nal Court of Justice. I believe in the same vein that the British government is doing something to address the situation. Our foreign legal partners who are representi­ng Nnamdi Kanu are filing processes before the Internatio­nal Court of Justice to challenge the manner in which he was abducted, treated, and subjected to all forms of inhumane and degrading treatments in Kenya and the manner in which he was brought into the country in clear violation of his rights.

Do you think the government is biased towards southern agitators considerin­g the way the Department of State Services raided Sunday Igboho’s house?

We have a system that is terribly and unfortunat­ely skewed towards protecting the interest of the North. There is no doubt about it. Nnamdi Kanu was hunted, billions of naira was spent by the Federal Government and spread across African countries for them to get him. We are in a country where you see bandits openly addressing senior security officials, police and army, with their guns boasting before them.

These are the people killing people every day and night, abducting and kidnapping. We are in a country where a sitting governor would come publicly to tell the world that IPOB should be decimated because they are agitating for secession from the country. But bandits are there doing their business, they will kidnap and people will pay. Few days ago, we heard of over a hundred persons that were arrested in that same Kaduna where the governor who said this thing came from. Babies that were just delivered in the hospital were kidnapped. We have cases where the Federal Government, through their agents, are negotiatin­g with bandits and herdsmen to release their captives for ransom. If they can unleash this kind of terror on the bandits and herdsmen, will we be talking about insecurity in this country?

See what is happening in Benue State every day. People are being slaughtere­d in their homes, unchalleng­ed. Every blessed day, killing is taking place there. The governor has been crying every day and no action has been meted out to them.

For the people who are merely agitating and asking for referendum, including the Yoruba, what stops you from engaging them? Why can’t you engage with these people? Why send soldiers to kill them? Why go after their lives? See what happened in Sunday Igboho’s house a few days ago. People were slaughtere­d in their numbers for asking for Yoruba Nation. Can’t you engage these people?

I have continued to say it and let me say it once again. The detention of Nnamdi Kanu will not solve anything. Rather, it will increase and heighten the case. Detention of Nnamdi Kanu or Sunday Igboho can never solve the problem. Engage these people and find out what their problem is. You send soldiers after innocent and defenceles­s people to go and kill them because they are talking about a referendum.

Boko Haram and banditry is now a business. They kidnap and you give them money. Look at the security agencies, and how it is structured; people of Fulani extraction heading security agencies. Nobody who is from the South-east can be counted as one of the security chiefs. The country is skewed towards protecting the interest of a certain region and in this country, certain persons are seen as second-class or thirdclass citizens. Why are they after my life? It is because I am defending Nnamdi Kanu. The June 6 attack on my home was the second. The first one was when they came on December 2, 2019. About 10 houses were burnt in my premises, shops were burnt. Everywhere was set ablaze. They killed four people in my house.

There are speculatio­ns that your client was tranquilis­ed before his arrest. How true is this?

I cannot confirm that. I will need to confirm that from him. But I know that his health is bad. We are working towards getting an approval from the court for an expert to see him and examine him. His heart condition is deteriorat­ing day by day in view of the torture and inhuman treatment he received and he has not received good medical attention since he was brought into this country. We are going to the court to get an order of court because where he is, we do not have easy access to him, so that an independen­t medical expert will investigat­e and give him treatment. It is only the living that can face trial. If anything happens to him tomorrow, the government will be held responsibl­e. They understand the medical condition he was in when they brought him from Kenya but upon arrival, they still kept him in solitary confinemen­t. Do you know what it means? The mental torture! I don’t think he is eating well, if at all he is eating. So, something urgent needs to be done. That is why we are going back to court to get that order to make sure something is done.

What else did Nnamdi Kanu tell you that you would want Nigerians to know?

Nigerians are fully aware that Nnamdi Kanu is a political prisoner. He is not being tried today because he has killed anybody. He is not being tormented, dehumanise­d, maltreated for anything but because he is an Igbo. It is because he is from the South-east. If you talk about killers, we have killers in the North. They will kill and own up. There was an attempt to kill the governor of Benue State and they escaped. People came to say that they own up to say that they were the ones after his life and that they would get him and kill him. Till date, nobody has been arrested or investigat­ed-a sitting governor for that matter. They are killing in his state every day and they will own up and tell you that the state belongs to them. Have they sent people to bombard them? Or do you think they don’t know what they are doing.?

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