OHANEZE Ndigbo has lashed out at justice minister Abubakar Malami for blaming Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) leader Nnamdi Kanu for the #Endsars protests which took place across the nation last year.
Highly controversial, Mr Kanu has campaigned for the creation of an independent nation state for Nigeria’s 18m Igbos and used to run a radio station broadcasting hard-hitting propaganda. Based in the UK, Mr Kanu ran an unregistered radio station in Nigeria, for which he was arrested during a visit in October 2015.
After being held in detention for a year and a half, Mr Kanu was released on bail in April 2017 by Justice Binta Nyako under strict conditions which included that he does not engage in any political activity. However, as soon as he was released, Mr Kanu defied the conditions, holding daily rallies at his house in Umuahia and travelled across Igboland spreading his message.
Fearful of his actions, the Nigerian government stepped up the military presence around Mr Kanu and fearful that he might be arrested, he fled the country in September 2017. Earlier this year, the federal government abducted Mr Kanu from Kenya in a commando operation and have since arraigned him on trial for treason.
Desperately searching for more charges with which to prosecute Mr Kanu, Mr Malami, Nigeria’s attorney-general and justice minister, said last week that the Ipob leader was responsible for the nationwide #Endsars that swept across Nigeria last year. He also blamed him for all the past and present killings going on across the southeast.
However, reacting to Mr Malami’s outburst, Ohanaeze Ndigbo expressed disappointment that the attorney-general descended to the level of total ignorance, shopping for offences just to nail Kanu. Chief Alex Chidozie Ogbonnia, Ohanaeze Ndigbo’s publicity secretary urged him to try to be above aboard as the nation’s chief law officer.
Chief Ogbonnia said: “One will think that a Senior Advocate of Nigeria and the attorney-general of the federation should be above board. It is therefore advised that Malami should not be so cheap for the uninitiated to discover his shenanigans.
“In other words, the above remarks by the attorney-general is very inelegant, imprudent, malicious, treacherous and fallacious. Malami should know that the Internet world has left him behind and all his game-plans are crude and anachronistic.
The Malami sinister motives of heaping all criminalities in Nigeria on Ipob or the Igbo including the crimes where arrests have been made and the known culprits already arraigned is most unethical, unprofessional and unbefitting of his office. Some other crimes that Malami ascribes to Ipob are still under investigation and arrests so far made are not linked to Ipob, so the Malami perversions are very strange to law and indeed a new dimension in Nigerian justice delivery system.
“Malami’s card is to paint the southeast of Nigeria as a terrorist zone, to prepare a ground for the use of the newly acquired American Super Tucano fighter jets in the zone. Malami should be reminded that the very condition for the sale and release of the jets to Nigeria by the USA is that they will be used strictly to fight the Boko Haram terrorists in the northeast and incessant banditry in the northwest.
“Furthermore, Malami is playing god by believing that the 2023 is the end of the world and is plotting hard against the Igbo interest and unfortunately, he has crossed the red line. That Ipob vandalized and looted the palace of the Oba of Lagos and burnt over 150 buses at the Lagos Bus Terminal were mere ethnic cards simply intended to play up the Yoruba against the Igbo.
“It is important for Malami to know that the bond between the Yoruba and the Igbo is strong, inseparable and beyond his narrow machinations. Malami should know that the Yoruba do not spill the Igbo blood and vice versa and the likes of Colonel Adekunle Fajuyi, who chose the supreme prize instead of betraying an Igbo in the person of General Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi Ironsi, have replicated across board in millions.”
He called on the Nigeria Bar Association to re-examine Mr Malami in a bid to establish his suitability and competence for the elevated office he occupies. Chief Ogbonnia reminded Mr Malami that Fulani herdsmen roam across the southeast with AK 47 rifles, ravage farms, debauch women, abduct men, maim and kill and no arrests have been made by the relevant authorities.