Traditional rulers in Abia state have demanded a panel of inquiry to investigate the role of the Nigerian Army in the invasion of the home of HRH Eze Israel Kanu, the father of the outlawed leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu.
The monarchs from three autonomous communities – Okwulaga, Enyiukwu and Isiama in Afaraukwu, Umuahia North Local Government Area of Abia State, petitioned President Muhammadu Buhari, to investigate the whereabouts of Eze Kanu; his wife, Lolo Sally; and some of his subjects after his palace was raided by the Army on September 14.
In the petition signed by the President-Generals of the three autonomous communities in Afara clan – Levi Ogbonna, Cletus Uwaechi and Chief Ikechukwu Ndubueze, the communities claimed they haven’t seen any of the aforementioned since the Army raid, the Punch reports.
The monarchs alleged that some members of the community were still missing since the military raid, heightening fears that they might have been killed and their bodies taken away by the invaders along with the IPOB members.
The communities demanded that the Army should be compelled to produce their traditional ruler, and also demanded full compensation for the desecration of the palace and the return of household items allegedly carted away from the palace by the soldiers.
“That since September 14, 2017, the whereabouts of one of our traditional ruler, HRH Eze I. O. Kanu, and members of his family, including some members of Isiama Afaraukwu community, are still unknown,” the petition read in part.
It will be recalled that Nnamdi Kanu whose whereabouts remain unknown recently petitioned the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACOHPR), asking it to stop the Federal Government from further violations and harassment against his person and IPOB members.
The petition was filed on his behalf by his counsel, Mr. Aloy Ejimakor, dated December 5, 2017, and entitled, ‘Communication Brought Pursuant to the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights’, and addressed to the Secretary of the Commission.
It listed Prof. Uzodimma Nwala, Chinedu Njoku, Greg Nwadike, Carol Munday, Jeremiah Chukwuokolo and two others as witnesses to the alleged violations. It read in part:
“The declaration that IPOB is a terrorist organisation and that its members commit terrorist acts has empowered and emboldened the Nigerian army and other security agencies, acting under the colour of law, to harass, intimidate, arrest or even kill or torture IPOB members and any member of the Igbo ethnic group suspected to be an IPOB member.
“Nnamdi Kanu is in imminent danger of being shot and killed on sight by Nigerian security forces still at-large at various checkpoints. They are on reconnaissance and in cordon and search operation in the environs and outlying areas of Nnamdi Kanu’s homestead at Afara-Ukwu, Umuahia, Abia State of Nigeria and at checkpoints in all the five states of the South East of Nigeria that border the wider geographical area of Umuahia where Nnamdi Kanu was last seen alive.
“Monies, bank accounts, other monetary instruments, chattels and real properties belonging to Nnamdi Kanu, IPOB and its members are in imminent danger of being confiscated by the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”