Igbo socio-political group, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, has accused the Federal Government of bias in the call for the revocation of bail granted leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu .
The group said the call for the re-arrest and bail revocation of Kanu was made in bad faith.
President General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, Chief John Nwodo, who gave the statement on behalf of the group on Saturday accused the Federal Government of bias, double standard and violation of Kanu’s fundamental human rights especially for refusing to arrest the Arewa Youths whom he said issued threatening and hate speech to Ndigbo.
Chief Nwodo also urged the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) to “please respect your oath of office,” wondering why the AGF would move to re-arrest Kanu while refusing to do anything to stop the Arewa youths whom he said only ‘pretended’ to withdraw the quit notice they issued to Igbo in the north. He also warned against excercerbating the already tensed nation by pursuing a legal means for the incaceration of Kanu, maitaining that “Nnamdi, as a citizen of Nigeria, is free to hold any point of view no matter how displeasing to anyone so long as they are not inciting or provoking any criminal activities.”
Kanu is standing trial, alongside others, for alleged offences of conspiracy to commit acts of treasonable felony and other related offences before this court.
Kanu was granted bail on April 25, 2017. The Federal Government approached the Federal High Court, Abuja, Friday, seeking the revocation of his bail .
The application was attached as a press release and made available to newsmen on Friday in Abuja by Salihu Isah, Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to the Minister of Justice.
In the application, the Federal Government is seeking an order of court revoking the bail granted Kanu on April 25.
The government is also seeking an order of court directing the arrest and committing Kanu to custody pending trial as well as any such order the court may deem fit in the circumstance.
However, Chief Nwodo spoke in a release titled,‘Attorney General of the Federation, please respect your oath of office!’
He said the Attorney-General of the Fedferation looked the other way while the Arewa youths kept issueng conditions for the enjoyment of citizenship in Nigeria as ensured by President Buhari in his speech upon return to Nigeria from London.
He said: “It has just been brought to my notice that the Attorney General of the Federation has approached the courts to incarcerate Nnamdi Kalu for flouting his bail conditions.
“I am amazed that the distinguished attorney is prepared to contest the superiority of the provisions of the constitution on fundamental human rights of freedom of movement and freedom of association over an erroneous judicial proclamation violating those rights.
“I am equally miffed by the audacity with which the Attorney General displays his bias without regard to his oath of office.
“A few hours ago under the watchful eyes of the Chairman of the Northern Governors Forum and in total defiance of the Head of State’s proclamation of the rights of a citizen of Nigeria to live anywhere in Nigeria and to do business anywhere in Nigeria, the Arewa youths, pretending to withdraw their quit notice gave qualifications to the Head of State’s proclamation, issuing conditions for enjoyment of citizenship status.
“These same Arewa youths are supposed to have been arrested on the orders of the Governor of Kaduna State and the Inspector General of Police for acts of treason, conversion and sedition.
“As the Chief Law Officer of the Federation, the Attorney General looks the other way. He does not go to court to seek an order of arrest or prosecution.
“Nnamdi, as a citizen of Nigeria, is free to hold any point of view no matter how displeasing to anyone so long as they are not inciting or provoking any criminal activities.
“I and some Igbo leaders have differences of opinion with Nnamdi on a number of issues. We have been insulted and abused by Radio Biafra but we concede them their right to differ from us. We concede them their nature to be exuberant as youths but we cannot be judgmental about their rights.
“This is a democracy. In democracies, leaders are abused, pelted with rotten eggs and booed at, as the former Edo State governor was booed in Abuja a few days ago. These acts are not necessarily criminal.
“I urge the Attorney-General not to exacerbate our already tense nation by commencing a legal action which portrays him as biased, insensitive and misdirected,” the Ohanaeze leader said.