The leader of the pro-Biafra campaigners, Nnamdi Kanu, who was granted bail by an Abuja Federal High Court, was re-arrested by operatives of the Nigeria’s secret police and a fresh charge of treasonable felony filed against him.
Shehu Bankole-Hameed, the author and one of the chieftains of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in the interview granted to the Vanguard, has criticized the renewed agitation for the Biafra.
President Muhammadu Buhari while speaking during his first media chat maintained that because of the enormity of the atrocities for which Kanu is being prosecuted, it was not in the best interest of Nigeria to release him at the moment.
Bankole-Hameed on the growing concerns over Buhari’s continued refusal to obey court orders said: “I’m not going to say that I don’t think that the President is a party to the court proceedings. EFCC I believe is the institution that is on trial as regards court orders, but to be fair to them, explanation as to how a new arrest is effected has been given. It was established in the case of Dasuki for example,that he had new criminal cases for which he was re-arrested.”
Reacted to the continued detention of the Biafra leader, APC chieftain added: “I think this is truly an interesting development. Here is someone who knows that what he did embark on was nothing short of terrorism. What does he expect of the authorities? Body massage, hotel accommodation or what? He is lucky Nigeria is not interested in capital punishment, otherwise he may be so charged. I think the government is even soft on him.”
He also defined what he understands under the Biafra agitation.
“There was an attempt by Ojukwu now late, to steal away and enslave non Igbo of the then Eastern Region, while taking over the oil in the region,” Bankole-Hameed stated.
“He got his own people to buy into the act, there was no justification for the declaration then, which made the concept of Biafra ineligible for negotiations.
“What needs to be done is to amend the Constitution to allow for legal agitation, where structured steps are laid out for such discourse.
‘Many countries have such provision. There should be no force or coercion in Union. Right now, activities related to agitation for Biafra is tantamount to terrorism.”
According to him the question of regional autonomy may be discussed at state levels, where various local communities agree that what is needed is the granting of legal, financial and economic autonomy.