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Thursday, May 26, 2022

Igbo Grandees’ Wrong-headed Plea for Political Mediation of Kanu Case

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Igbo political emissaries met with President Buhari in Abuja to plead for the release of Nnamdi Kanu, the incarcerated leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB). It is an unfortunate intervention that could undermine IPOB’s long-term revolutionary project and near-term Igbo political interest.

By Chudi Okoye

There was news reporting today that a group of Igbo grandees, billed as “Highly Respected Igbo Greats”, trundled themselves out to Abuja to meet with President Muhammadu Buhari to ask for an unconditional release of Mr Nnamdi Kanu, the incarcerated leader of the proscribed Igbo agitation group, Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The delegation included Chief Mbazulike Amaechi, a First Republic parliamentarian and Minister of Aviation, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife, former Governor of Anambra State, Bishop Sunday Onuoha of the Methodist Church, and Chief Barrister Goddy Uwazurike, former President of Igbo socio-cultural group, Aka Ikenga. Buhari received them well and promised to consider their request.

The opinion that follows below will probably sound insensitive coming from an Igbo man, but I think the Igbo grandees who went to plead with Buhari to release Kanu made a grievous mistake.

No doubt the Igbo grandees meant well. They probably felt compelled to act, likely for patriotic reasons but also on behalf of a scandalized Igbo political elite facing increasing pressure from a radicalized Igbo rank and file. But, in my opinion, their plea to President Buhari is constitutionally illiterate; it is politically inastute; and it is an ill-considered move that will likely hobble IPOB’s long-term revolutionary strategy.

Buhari was right to have stated – as reported, in response to the Igbo delegation – that its plea offends a fundamental tenet of the Nigerian constitution, which is the separation of powers. This constitutional principle was first fully articulated by Baron de Montesquieu, one of the great political philosophers of the Enlightenment, in his seminal work, The Spirit of the Laws, published in 1748. The principle was invoked by Montesquieu as a major critique of feudal absolutism in France and elsewhere in Europe, and it greatly influenced the constitutional ideals of both the American and the French revolutions. It has since become a cornerstone of modern constitutional government around the world.

In Nigeria, we have adopted and are deepening this constitutional principle as a revolutionary departure from the tripartite absolutisms of our history – first the feudal absolutism that flourished in several proto-Nigerian territories; then British imperialist absolutism; and finally, military absolutism.

The case against Nnamdi Kanu is now sub judice and is yet to be dispositioned; therefore, it is unclear if Buhari actually has proper legal power to intervene in the matter. Of course, the president has significant latitude under Section 175 of the 1999 Constitution which deals with the exercise of prerogative of mercy. The provision imbues a Nigerian president with the power to pardon “any person concerned with or convicted of any offence created by an Act of the National Assembly…, either free or subject to lawful conditions.” I doubt if this power can be exercised prior to the dispositioning of a case, but maybe our constitutional lawyers can weigh in with an interpretation.

Aside from the constitutional issue, there is also the political implication, for the Igbos, of its leaders, or purported leaders, going to Abuja to plead on behalf of Kanu. What is the object of their plea: are they asking for “forgiveness” – which would sound like a suggestion or an admission that Kanu and his IPOB are doing something wrong?

If so, the question arises as to what they think IPOB is getting wrong: is it the charge of Igbo marginalization and persecution which IPOB levies against the Nigerian state? Or is it the particular revolutionary tactics adopted by the group? What are the Igbo grandees pleading that Buhari should forgive – if indeed that is the thesis of their plea?

Even if the Igbo leaders did not mean to ask for “forgiveness”, it will certainly be construed as such by Buhari and his regime. They will read the intervention as an apology; they will construe it as Igbo leaders begging for forgiveness, which will be rather unfortunate.

There are at least two grievous implications from such an imputation by the Buhari regime. One pertains to near-term Igbo political interests, and the other to IPOB’s long-term revolutionary project.

If the Buhari regime reads the intercession of the Igbo grandees as a plea for forgiveness, Buhari could (over)leverage his powers under section 175 of the Constitution and “pardon” Kanu, but he will exact a heavy political price from the Igbos for the concession. For one thing, we can forget the idea of an Igbo president in 2023. The Nigerian state, or the dominant elite therein, already feels that conceding the presidency to the Igbos is a major concern, even a major risk. Buhari may be advised by his political strategists – and the wily president may accept the advice – to “free” Nnamdi Kanu as a substitute for conceding the presidency to the Igbos in the near term.

More than the presidency, Buhari and his anti-Igbo coterie could also leverage the “forgiveness” of Nnamdi Kanu to continue and even intensify federal disinvestment of Igboland.

Igboland has suffered from a systematic policy asphyxiation since the end of the Civil War, despite the ‘No Victor, No Vanquished’ nostrum enunciated after the war. We went from a hot, shooting war in 1967-70 to a cold war of policy neglect thereafter. This has resulted in de-industrialization and infrastructure disinvestment in Igbo territories, leading to a relentless economic decay.

The plea to pardon Nnamdi Kanu could become another chip to be used by the anti-Igbo forces in the Nigerian regime to further reduce federal investment in Igboland. It will be a heavy price to pay.

But it is not just the geopolitical implication for the Igbos that matters here. What would become of IPOB’s revolutionary strategy if its virulent leader were “pardoned”, with conditions, by the Nigerian state?

We know now, from the constant complaints of Nnamdi Kanu and his lawyers, that the guy is no Nelson Mandela who refused P. W. Botha’s offer in 1985 to release him from prison, subject to certain conditions. Rejecting the terms offered by the apartheid government for his release, Mandela had said to Botha:

I cannot sell my birthright, nor am I prepared to sell the birthright of the people to be free… I cannot and will not give any undertaking at a time when I and you, the people, are not free. Your freedom and mine cannot be separated.

This was 1985. Mandela was 66 years old at the time and had been in prison for about 23 years. Yet, he refused an offer to be freed from prison if it would hobble the revolutionary objectives of his party, the African National Congress (ANC), which was to overthrow the apartheid system under which South African Blacks had been suffering.

But we are seeing now that Nnamdi Kanu is no Mandela. Since his incarceration, his lawyers and associates have been howling about his suffering; he has used his IPOB to terrorize his own people, undermining Igbo economy, preventing school children from attending school, and generally imposing a reign of terror in Igboland.

Buhari and his gang will no doubt perceive that Kanu has little tolerance for the austerities of life under incarceration, this being the evident reason why he is sabotaging and terrorizing his own people and pressuring Igbo elites to plead for his release. So, it would stand to reason that Buhari will impose severe conditions against IPOB’s revolutionary quest in order to pardon Kanu.

Does anyone think that Buhari will pardon Kanu and yet give him free rein to continue his radical attack on the Nigerian state, or even to continue to press the Igbo case?

Not me!

So, whichever way one looks at it, this outing by the Igbo grandees, though well-meaning, is a major strategic error. It undermines not only IPOB’s revolutionary agenda but also the larger geopolitical interest of Igbo people.

It would be better for Kanu to go through the crucible of judicial trial and hopefully come out triumphant. That way, he and his IPOB will retain the moral and possibly legal right to continue their agitation, even if they have to amend their tactics.

And Igbo people will not have conceded anything in their demand for equal citizenship and equal opportunity in the firmament of Nigerian politics.

23 COMMENTS

  1. Dear Dr. Chudi.
    You spoke so well, strongly, and with apparent good intentions on Igbo Grandees plea to PMB on MNK.. But you mixed one or two vital points at issue.

    2. Firstly, even if the Igbo Grandees were stampeded to interface with Buhari, that act conveyed very strong signals that the whole Igbo race can speak and plead the cause of MNK and Ipoh. To show, if nothing else, that he is not an orphan in this struggle for freedom that affect Igbo’s, of all hues and segments, including you and me.

    3. I will not outrightly accuse you of scoring an “own goal”, by shouting out the misstep of Igbo leaders. But you nearly did so.

    4. In this instance, you could be guilty of flippancy. And of not paying heed to the popular Igbo proverb that you cannot openly expose your old man for a silent but smelly fart in a public square gathering.

    5. Consider that as a strong arm act, the old grandees might have worked on the strategy of getting Buhari to resort, somehow, to the situation ethics of ” when it is right to do the wrong thing”.. And vice versa.

    6. Finally as a quasi maximum ruler, Buhari, himself hassled in all fronts, could instruct AGF, Malami, to find a way to file a “nolle proseque” on the matter. Cest finis!

    7. Or the trial Judge, and DSS, might get signals that mellow the mood of the FGN, PMB, AGF,. et al on the matter in court. If the court put his bail at N1billion, I bet you that we can get 10 Igbo billionaires to post the bond.

    8. Realising that the MNK case is going nasty, with the strong issue of his “Rendition”, instead of simple arrest, in Kenya, for which the attention of the ICC in the Hague has been drawn to by Kanu’s lawyers and other powerful NGOs and lobby groups.

    9. But your best point was on the moral strength of MNK if, arising from this representation, Kanu is set free conditionally. But I think now that his major scores include getting Igbo Leaders, Igwes, Bishops to rise up in his defence, while he basks in the euphoria of occasionally shutting down Igboland in the ” Sit At Home” strangle hold. And, men, does it hurt?

    10. Considering my above observations, and perhaps wobbly views, I will advise that you do well to tarry a while before committing strong, negative opinions against Ndigbo, Ipob and MNK.in this and other matters.

  2. The writer has made valid points but failed to address the 2 scenarios properly
    .
    The Constitution provides for the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) to withdraw ANY MATTER before the Court at any stage as long as judgement has not been pronounced. It therefore means that the executive (the President could weigh in here without any conditions set). Just case withdrawal. And he does not have to give any reason to the Court for the withdrawal.

    After conviction and judgement is when the President can order release on PREROGATIVE OF MERCY without recourse to the Judiciary. Here, he could extract documented binding conditions.

    It therefore isn’t necessarily a visit that undermines Ndigbo as being presented by the writer.

  3. MNK has made valid points with his IPOB. It’s time to re-strategize their modus operandi. Hopefully with Igbo elites and intelligentsia playing a more active role. Let’s start by securing his release under any circumstance first. The FG can decide to withdraw charges and end the trial. Heavens will not fall. Abacha’s son and the former CSO to Abacha, Major Mustapha, are beneficiaries of our queer political jurisprudence.

  4. I support the move by the elders to negotiate for MNK release.

    MNK is not Mandela and will never be one.

    Let’s get him out first instead of allowing him die in detention.

    He has a young family to cater for.

    I know that after his release, if ever Buhari drops the charges against him, IPOB must seat down redirect their efforts towards ensuring the right leaders are voted into political offices in the SE.

  5. The plea for Kanu’s release by the Igbo elders is a step in the right direction. Gen. Sani Abacha in 1995 gave same concession to Abiola to drop his struggle but Abiola was wrongly advised by his think tank and he died in prison and his businesses crumbled, his wife was also killed and heavens did not fall. After Abiola died some of those advisers said that it was foolish of him to reject the Abacha offer for freedom, that it was better to fight from outside than to fight from inside the prison. Are you saying that the Igbo presidency will come if Kanu dies in prison? He who fights and runs away lives to fight another day.

  6. I don’t really know what they went there to do. This whole adventure stinks of illiteracy. On the whole I think the Grantees are helping Buhari untie himself.

  7. Well written. Eminently well argued. There are areas I might differ on but that’s another matter. One thing you might wish to consider in this case is that in his capacity as President, Buhari embodies the prosecutor in this case. He has the ultimate authority over the AG and simplistically put, can direct a withdrawal of charges in which case the release of NK is secured.

  8. I appreciate this your contribution. I also go on to say there were to many flaws on this their visit. To just add to what you said, if the Elders did not tell Buhari that “he is just holding the messenger and not the message.” The message is with Ndi Igbo as a whole which is injustice, inequity and open discrimination against Igbos. These are the main issues. So holding NK will not solve the problem if he does not address the message.
    NK is a prisoner of conscience and not a terrorist, no matter how the twist, and so cannot be convicted as such. Pardoning NK is a great face saving device for Buhari government which they should grab. Holding NK is clear case of Buhari administration not ready to address the impunity and injustice going on in the country and most especially with Ndi Igbo. And finally, perhaps Buhari could release NK just like he did to El Zazanky and Dasuki to calm nerves, otherwise what NK needs most is a speedy trial, knowing that justice delayed is justice denied. These are the clear facts we expect or have expected from these Elders to deliver at Aso Rock. To just ask for his release, and their being able to stop him and the IPOB is not only an admission of guilty, but a further subjugation, humiliation and suppression of Ndi Igbo. May it not be so.

    This is my humble observation. I may be wrong. Please help me out.

  9. I don’t agree with the various positions you took on this matter. I do not want Kanu released not for the same reasons you are giving. First I don’t see the relationship between Kanu and perceived South East marginalisation, which I have never accepted anyway. Because I don’t share in the entitled mindset of the Big Three ethnic groups.

    Kanu is a criminal, a murderer and a deranged psychopath. Dasuki had his day in court. Former Abacha CSO, Al Mustapha had his time and spent over 13 years in Kirikiri prison. El Zakzaki is still in detention for being an authority onto himself and pledging allegiance to a foreign country instead of Nigeria.

    For Kanu, there is no Nigeria. There is no Buhari…. presumably because the person there is “Jubril of Sudan”. He must first proof to us why and how he came by that conclusion. Those allegations that he was peddling in his usual radio programme must be brought before the courts. The DNA evidence must be presented that he obtained from his contact in Sudan. Kanu owes Nigeria many explanations. Nigeria should never let him free. for any political solution. He has never been a political problem. He has only been and always a criminal problem. Why should the state release him? So that his band of criminal IPOB elements and others around the country with similar disposition will celebrate and see violence as a means to an end? That can be used to put pressure on the system for what ever purpose? That Nigeria will concede at the sight of violence? My brother, I don’t think so.

    Even venturing into a comparison with Mandela for me was a grave disservice to the great leader of the apartheid struggle. You have elevated a criminal to the level of a statesman. I am even surprised that you even conceived it.

    You are wrong in seeing Kanu as a pathway to addressing your perceived marginalisation concerns. I think you are putting too much hope in a direction that failed from conception. Kanu inside or outside does not have that capacity.

    To address your sad governance situation, you need to focus on changing the quality of your leadership. Which is actually what every sector or region or state of Nigeria needs. It is not limited to the South East alone. Every sector needs an achievement-driven leader who will focus more on quality governance than the political. Nigeria must never encourage secessionists by treating them lightly. They must face the full weight of the law and be either sentenced accordingly or freed if found not guilty. The errors of pardon for treason must never be repeated. We must be a country of laws. Every Nigerian, from the president to the criminals, must live within the confines of our laws. We need to stop the ethnicisation of criminal actions. Almost all those who went to the president are, to me, the members of the board of trustees of IPOB. From Chief Amaechi to Chief Ezeife. They have never hidden their love and support for Kanu and his destructive behaviour. Releasing Kanu will send the wrong message to those who died for no justifiable reason. What do you think can stop their family members from adopting same measures to seek revenge even against Kanu himself on the street? We should allow Kanu to have his day in court. He has evidence for his actions. Let him match it with our laws. This is the time for us to believe his claims. The moment for the magician. Let us not interfere.

  10. I’m in agreement with the positions in this post but must point out that the grandees fell for the “political solution” bandied by Mr Mallami who flew the initial kite for a middle way in resolving the Nigerian conundrum which I believe can only be resolved through talks by all Nigerians as there is a groundswell of agreement across Nigeria for a new and inclusive Nigeria.

    I support the agitations for an inclusive Nigeria devoid of nepotism and ethnic cleansing on land and in national institutions and parastatals.

  11. I also oppose the IPOB’s Biafra now now objectives as I believe we need a pan Nigeria consensus to deal with the Fulbe problem ailing Nigeria. I can’t settle for a shot of brandy when I can own the whole bottle.

  12. What are the grounds for arresting Kanu & Igboho? No one from the Bandits has been identified, let alone arrested, even as Gumi relates with them frequently. Yet, you believe in courts whose judges are selected and paid by the same FG carrying out unlawful or unwarranted raids and arrests?

    Let’s be objective in our thoughts, and sensible too. It’s glaring that Nigeria’s justice system is dysfunctional. Saying anyone has his day in court, especially against this current administration, is like saying one has his day in heaven against God.

  13. Some things do not really add up here about the visit. The two main figures – Amechi and Ezeife – have always been supportive of Kanu, to which i find intriguing. Could it be senility at play or just mere filial, parochial emotion? Kanu has over the years made several allegations, both against the state and against any individual who disagrees with him; and not for once has he ever substantiated any of his allegations.

    On what basis is the call for his release made? He should be released so he continues with his terrorism and traumatisation of his own people, with his wild imagination running riot, posing as irrefutable facts? He should be released to start parading Igboland as messiah, elevating the emotional threshold of the plebeans, who ordinarily are incapacitated to think for themselves?
    Kanu’s problem is not even a Nigerian problem; it is more of an Igbo problem, for it is going to take years to extricate our youths from the ideological damage he had obviously plunged them into, long after he must have faded away, like the rest before him, just as the charlattan he is.

  14. The article of Chudi Okoye of Awka Times captioned: “The Igbo Gradees’ Wrongheaded Plea for Kanu’s Release” looks well-articulated and well written but grossly misplaced!

    First, the people he referred to as “grandees” didn’t go to Mr President to seek for pardon or “forgiveness” for MNK but, to ask for the UNCONDITIONAL release of MNK to the leader of their team, a 93-year old only surviving First Republic Minister and one of the founding fathers modern Nigeria.

    MNK’s UNCONDITIONAL release, I think, will also save the Major-General Muhammadu Buhari’s regime impending embarrassment in International jurisprudence for extraordinary rendition.

    Therefore, the calculated intervention of the so styled “grandees” would indeed be a win – win situation for all the parties involved if heeded.

    So, how does this smart move of Ndigbo Elders undermine “IPOB’s revolutionary agenda” (whatever that means) and “the larger geopolitical interest of Igbo people”?

    There is no basis for comparison of MNK’s situation now with that of South Africa’s Nelson Mandela. No basis!

    Mandela was ‘tried’ and ‘jailed’ but MNK isn’t.

    Mandela was serving a prison term after “conviction” but, MNK isn’t.

    MNK was extraordinarily “kidnapped”, “drugged” and “freighted” from a foreign land to Nigeria against all known International laws and protocols. Mandela was not!

    The “grandees” never asked for Mr President’s interference with the judicial process because it wasn’t a judicial process that brought MNK to his present state. So, in effect, all the legal and constitutional jargons adduced by Chudi Okoye in his article essentially becomes a non sequitur ab initio and illogical.

    In fact, Ohaneze Ndigbo Worldwide under the present leadership of Ambassador Professor George Obiozor, had asked for a speedy, open and fair trial of MNK to which this regime of Major-General Muhammadu Buhari has seemingly if not deliberately refused, neglected and/or failed to commence, going by the recurrent long adjournments of the taunted “trial” to the extent of even denying MNK’s access to his legal team both within and outside the court while still holding MNK in custody.

    After all, is justice delayed not justice denied?

    Mustn’t he that goes to equity do so with clean hands?

    Not few people cried foul of the ongoing manipulations of judicial processes of perverting justice thus leading to the suggestion of a “political solution”!
    Then, what could be more “political solution” than the smart intervention of the Igbo Elders in the circumstance?

    If the Elders had kept quiet in the face of tyranny and obvious extraordinary rendition of MNK, tendency is that, they will be accused of abandoning their son if not a grandson at a crucial moment of need and at a trying time!

    Now that the Elders have stepped out to demand the immediate unconditional release of their son to them, the least any rational being should/could do in the circumstance is to commend their bold step; not condemnation!

    I really wonder what the said Chudi Okoye means by “IPOB’s revolutionary quest” that could be compromised by the legitimate visit of the Ndigbo Elders to Mr. President to demand for an UNCONDITIONAL RELEASE of their incarcerated son to them!

    It is also inconceivable that the genuine peace and reconciliation intervention of the Ndigbo Elders could compromise the legitimate yearnings for a Nigerian President of South East extraction come 2023.
    On the contrary, the Elders intervention could enhance the negotiations power of Ndigbo and further justify the clamour for a President of South East extraction come 2023.

    By the way, what “revolution” is Chudi Okoye talking about?
    Somehow, the way people manipulate and twist grammar to justify a predetermined position even if illogical is really amazing!

    Assuming but not necessarily conceding that what Chudi Okoye wrote in his article under reference are all correct, why must it be an Igbo man that should justify and/or furnish the tormentors of another Igbo man with the weapons of annihilation?

    To the best of my knowledge, Ndigbo are not against MNK having his time in court following due process if there is a genuine case against him. But, if an interested party has used extra judicial means to kidnap and incarcerate a person, what is wrong in demanding that the same extra judicial means be used also free the person?

    To the best of my knowledge, Ndigbo Elders are not saying that MNK is totally correct in his methodology and approach to issues but, does it make any sense to “correct” a wrong with another wrong?

    To the best of my knowledge, Ndigbo Elder haven’t ever “conceded anything in their demand for equal citizenship and opportunity in the firmament of Nigerian politics”

    May peace and progress reign in our country Nigeria.

    Let unity of purpose anchored on Equity, Fairness and Justice prevail in Nigeria.

  15. I think the criticism of this move is not well placed.

    Regarding Buhari’s power to intervene, under the Nigerian constitution, the attorney general of the federation has the power to intervene at any point during a criminal trial involving the fed govt to enter a “nolle proseque” and that will immediately end the trial and the party on trial will be set free sine die

    The fed govt know they have this power and when they start talking about a political solution I am encouraged that they may be considering this route and I truly recommend that route to them after all their charges against MNK is very watery and unsustainable in a court of law even in Nigeria. It will be face saving for them and yet they would have suffered the young man through detention while in trial and extraction of information from him by all means.

    Let me try and explain what I think will play out at least as I see it. Buhari knowing that his case against MNK is weak because we have seen the charges. Because MNK is a political prisoner. Because the whole thing is causing security and political problems for him etc, It is a loss loss situation for him. He can’t win even if the court convicts MNK and sends him to jail, these consequences will simply aggravate. He is actually the one engineering these visits and letters writing asking for the release of MNK. He gleefully receives the delegations and is giving them conditions ( the costs to IPOB you are talking about, like you guys tell him to drop this agitation etc) ok so let’s assume MNK agrees to these conditions and Buhari, using the purely judicial process as I said above releases MNK, making a broadcast about entreaties made to him by prominent Igbo personalities etc and for peace and harmony to reign bla bla he releases MNK and the boys celebrate and simply return to their original non violent agitation. What would they have lost ? How will this scuttle IPOB ? So many boko haram militants have been forgiven by the same Buhari and they have continued their war with increased intensity no loss of objective. Summary, IPOB essence and objective will not be lost when MNK release is negotiated because the govt is wrong in the first instance to attack the issue the way they did.

    Buhari is a politician after all and all politicians horse trade nothing is cast in stone for them. It is only their interest that seem to be permanent. I did not say Buhari will simply let MNK off the hook. He is already bargaining. My point is that IPOB and MNK will lose nothing by engaging with him in a bargain. That’s what it is all about. If Buhari can get for example the entire SE to join APC and vote to legitimize his successor and all he needs to do is release MNK he will deal. Also if he can get assurance that IPOB will stop carrying weapons and attacking the Nigerian state, killing both police and soldiers, he will deal, if he can get assurance that peace will return to a major part of the country that bears some oil and reduce the pressure he is getting from the international community to reduce violence, he will deal, etc. perhaps they went after MNK this time was because they got nothing from the first time he was granted bail. My point is that both parties have a skin in the game and negotiation is not out of place. Mind you if MNK is sent to jail, there may not be election in the SE in 2023 and Buhari’s successor will be without legitimacy and may not stay long to protect his legacy and kleptocracy. He has a plethora of reasons to want to deal rather than just sending MNK to jail. Am not sure there is so much benefit for him in doing that!

    The proscription of IPOB as a terrorist organization was wrong and had been roundly condemned. Buhari cannot come and benefit from his wrong, he is neither Mussolini nor Hitler even those failed in that quest.

  16. Your distaste for the “virulent“ Nnamdi Kanu is glaringly evident and not surprising to me but to succumb to this delusional mind of Igbo presidency come 2023 is incomprehensible to this son of man! For someone who claims to be politically astute what difference will toothless Igbo Presidency bear to Ndi Igbo with the Fulani actually in charge just like the Zik’s ceremonial presidency in the aftermath of Nigeria’s so called independence? I’m still waiting for your epistle on Bboko Haram, Myetti Allah, Isis, Iswap, Pantami, Sheikh Gumi, and Malam, a self-confessed murderer sitting as the attorney general of your One Nigeria. Some of us see what are patently wrong in that contraption and yet turn the other way for their selfish interests. In the midst of all these our people continue to suffer. What are your solutions? Who is kidding who? But we must continue.

  17. I have resisted the temptation to join issues with people here, but I think Mr. Chudi Okoye has breached the Fourth Protocol this time around.

    I’m not a lawyer but I do know that Montesquieu, apart from his great work on the principle of Separation of Powers, also advocated for the principle of “political solution” to knotty issues that gnaw at the foundation of society.

    MNK’s case is a political matter. That is the truth irrespective of contrary opinions. Those you referred to as “grandees” did the best thing in the current circumstance.

    They have done what wise elders should do in times of distress; they have shown that it is a crime for the elder to stay at home and watch the she-goat deliver on her tethers.

    This is not the time to flex legal muscles, speak all the legal terminologies or cite cases. Your assumption that such appeal to the President could imperil the Igbo presidency project is not correct.

    Are you not worried with the state of things in the South-East? IPoBians have grounded our economy. Our political leaders have run out of ideas on how to manage the situation. There is problem in our political space.

    So if the release of MNK would resolve all these problems, why not? And let me make this point, if I am faced with a choice between freeing MNK and Igbo presidency, I will settle for MNK’s release. An Igbo president cannot perform well in the present structural configuration in Nigeria.

    There is need to engage MNK and his group. As it’s now, there is no platform for such engagement with MNK still in bonds.

    Probably, you don’t understand the gravity of the situation or that you don’t live anywhere in the South-East.

  18. You can get MNK released, but can you control him and his self-destructive proclivities? Is it not MNK and IPOB that have inflicted the greater damage on the economy of the SE than any other traducer, and provided the pretext that our enemies needed to lay siege and devastation on the SE?

  19. In all honesty I don’t expect Kanu to be released or accept conditional release. He is expected to have dedicated his life to the ‘struggle’. It’s his choice. It baffles me when IPOB members agitate for his release. What release? Freedom fighting is not a pot of beans! That said, denying the divisive policy of this regime is like denying that Nigeria isn’t in Africa. It’s as crystal clear as a naturally deep lake. Also denying that Buhari’s policies gave fuel to these agitations is akin to same. I don’t want to delve into MNK and IPOB’s MO, since I’m not a member of the organization, it actually is not my business so to do; but to say most of their actions and utterances are infantile and despicable may be an understatement. Like I said, my voice doesn’t count here. Apologies to their members and sympathisers on this.

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