IPOB Kanu deserves amnesty – Ohanaeze
George Obiozor, the president-general of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has urged President Muhammadu Buhari to grant amnesty to Nnamdi Kanu,who is on trial for treason felony and terrorism.
Obiozor, a former director-general of the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs, NIIA, urges a political solution that will get the separatist leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, out of prison.
“We in Igboland have made it categorically clear that we prefer a political solution to it — a dialogue to end it. It is clear to the rest of Nigeria,” he said.
“And we have repeatedly said that Igbo nation is not at war with Nigeria. Therefore, what is happening can be handled. I will use the words ‘political solution’ as the answer. Dialogue is the answer.
“Just as other sections of Nigeria, some areas of Nigeria, people who behaved like Kanu have been forgiven, given amnesty and integrated into the country.
“So, what we are asking is for Mr President to use the prerogative of mercy to look into the situation in the south-east.
“Prerogative of mercy is exclusively the right of the president. We are not talking about court. We are not talking about use of force. Use of force is dangerous for everybody and it will definitely not solve the problem. It will make it worse.
“We are not new to Nigeria’s politics. We saw in south-south — Niger Delta Avengers, MEND — and the rest, even the present Boko Haram, those who said they are repenting, how they are being rehabilitated.
“The problem of federalism is that the sensitivity is very much on the surface. If you don’t do one as you have done others, you will have problem.”
Elders from the south-east region had visited President Buhari in November to plead for Kanu’s release. But the President during his recent media chat with Channels television spurned the suggestion. Rather, he urged Kanu to defend himself of the allegations in court.
TheCornet reports that Nigeria’s south-east has continued to grapple with the activities of the outlawed separatist group demanding a separation from the Nigerian federation. Frequent clashes between security operatives and the group had led to violence and mayhem.