World Igbo Congress urges Supreme Court to free Nnamdi Kanu unconditionally

Aliya Moses
4 Min Read

As the Supreme Court is set to decide on the fate of the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, today, the World Igbo Congress, WIC, has urged the apex court to affirm earlier judgments of subordinate courts and order Kanu’s unconditional release.

WIC, the apex organisation for all people of Igbo descent in the Diaspora, also urged the Supreme Court to ignore the rumoured pressure on it to postpone the December 15 judgment day it had earlier scheduled to decide on Kanu’s matter.

This is coming barely 24 hours after a US lawmaker, Jarvis Johnson of District 139, State of Texas and the President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, respectively, made similar calls.

Chairman of WIC, Dr Festus Okere, in a statement, said: “WIC’s view that Kanu is a freedom fighter and a leading advocate of Igbo interests within the Nigerian polity has been ratified by the recent ruling of the High Court of Enugu State.”

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The statement said: “This court held that the secretive classification of IPOB as a terrorist group by the Federal Government of Nigeria and its sub-national entities violates Section 42 of the Nigerian Constitution.

“It is now settled that IPOB was never and is not a terrorist entity; it has always been and remains a non-violent organisation advocating for the right of self-determination of the Igbo.”

According to WIC, Kanu’s extraordinary rendition from Kenya and continued detention in custody are political persecution that should be terminated.

WIC and most Igbo have always considered the extraordinary rendition and solitary confinement of MNK as part of the FGN’s overt and covert policy of unjustified discrimination against the Igbo, especially during the administration of former President Muhammadu Buhari. The Buhari administration considered the Igbo as a ‘dot’ and an underserving ‘5 percent’ voters of the Nigerian polity.

“This erroneous view led to its unjustified and unconstitutional but consistent persecution of the Igbo in whole or in part. MNK was collateral damage to that discriminatory and oppressive act by the FGN.

The Igbo are aware that MNK was extraordinarily renditioned in Kenya by the FGN; and that the Nigerian Courts and other International Tribunals have held that it was illegal for the FGN to do so. Since June 27, 2021, MNK has been in solitary confinement in Nigeria. Even with his poor health conditions, he has been denied the opportunity to obtain appropriate medical treatment.

WIC notes that many other sub-national groups\tribes within the Nigerian polity including the Northern Elders Council (NEC), and the Oduduwa nation, have expressed similar views urging the right for self-determination as IPOB. None of their leaders or members are currently confined.

“Similarly, the leadership of Boko Haram, an internationally certified terrorist organization freely operating within the Nigerian polity, appears to be pampered by the FGN.

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“Regardless of the growing negative perception of the Supreme Court amongst the Nigerian populace, it continues to be the last hope of the common man.’

Still on why it should free Nnamdi Kanu, WIC said it “believes that the Supreme Court will uphold the rule of law including the right of free speech and freedom of association enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution; and that it will ratify the numerous judgments of its subordinate courts, and of various International tribunals, which have all unanimously ordered the unconditional and immediate release of MNK.”

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