KENYA’S government has denied playing any part in the recent abduction of Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) leader Nnamdi Kanu saying that despite the fact that he may have been snatched in their country it was a wholly Nigerian operation.
In a dramatic development on Tuesday this week, Mr Kanu was arrayed in court in Abuja the Nigerian capital with justice minister Abubakar Malami, revealing that he had been arrested abroad and deported. It was originally claimed that Mr Kanu was arrested in the UK but Dean Hurlock, a spokesman for the British high commission in Nigeria denied this and speculation about where the arrest took place has grown.
It later emerged that Mr Kanu was arrested in Kenya amid claims that the local police were involved and it was them who then handed him over to Nigerian security agents. However, the Kenyan government has denied this saying it was not involved in the arrest and could not even ascertain that the arrest took place within its borders.
Alexander Muteshi, the director-general of the Kenyan Immigration Services, dismissed the claims of his country’s complicity, arguing that it was not possible to tell whether Mr Kanu had entered Kenyan territory. He refused to confirm claims by Mr Kanu’s family that the Ipob leader was apprehended in Nairobi.
Mr Muteshi said: “I can’t know that as I am not in the picture of his presence in the country. I am only able to tell if somebody entered the country legally.”
This has left room for speculation as to whether Mr Kanu had sneaked into Kenya through either illegal routes or under a false name. Kenyan government spokesman Cyrus Oguna, refused to discuss the matter when asked.
Mr Kanu’s family and Ipob had accused the Kenyan government of having committed the most serious violation of international law. Kanu was arrested on Sunday but the exact location of his arrest remains contentious and there is no evidence of due process or international law being followed.
From all indications, it appears that Mr Kanu was abducted and drugged, similarly to the way Dr Umaru Dikko was snatched in London in 1984. There is no evidence of any Kenyan minister signing an extradition warrant or of any court of law issuing a deportation order, indicating that this was a covert abduction.