Former military Governor of Kaduna State, Col. Abubakar Umar (rtd), wednesday cautioned against the plan by the federal government to re-arrest the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mr. Nnamdi Kanu.
Umar, Chairman of Movement for Unity and Progress (MUP), noted that Kanu “is not a common criminal as the government appears to think,” noting that it would be politically unwise to revoke his bail and re-arrest him.
He canvassed the position in a statement he personally signed yesterday, noting that Kanu’s seeming militant approach “is the result of the strong arm tactics with which the federal government deals with him.”
He faulted the plan of the federal government “to approach the Federal High Court in Abuja to revoke the bail granted him Kanu and have him rearrested. This is both dangerous and politically unwise.
“This is both dangerous and politically unwise. Kanu is not a common criminal as the government appears to think. On the contrary, he is a bitter young man fighting for a fairer deal for his Igbo kinsmen.”
“Kanu is not a common criminal as the government appears to think. On the contrary, he is a bitter young man fighting for a fairer deal for his Igbo kinsmen. His seeming militant approach is the result of the strong arm tactics with which the federal government deals with him.
“His long incarceration before a court granted him bail testifies to this. Like Kanu, many Igbos genuinely feel marginalised since they belong to the category of those who gave President Muhammadu Buhari only 5 per cent of their votes and appeared to have fallen out of his favour.”
The former military governor explained that Buhari’s insistence that the unity of Nigeria “is a settled issue is a nationalistic wish and is no surprise coming from a veteran of civil war fought to keep the country one.”
However, Umar noted that Buhari’s statement “does not take into account the mood of the country as indicated by the growing agitations for self determination, restructuring and many other similar demands.“
He noted: “If indeed the president is able to ignore and silence those agitators, it will be a case of suspended animation. All indications are that Nigeria has become so polarized that it requires a strong personality like General Buhari to sustain its fragile unity.”
The former military governor explained that the fact that there “are growing agitations for self determination, restructuring and other similar demands speak gravely of the way the federation is being governed.”
He explained that Nigeria’s unity “can only be guaranteed when all its citizens feel they are getting a fair deal; when all its component parts are treated justly and equitably and when none feels oppressed.
“Kanu, Adeyanju and other similar agitators might seem like felons or even anarchists, but as it often happens over humanity’s turbulent history, appearances can be deceitful,” he noted.