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EXCLUSIVE: Nnamdi Kanu to give up Biafra agitation after release – Source

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The embattled leader of the Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB), Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has reportedly agreed to finally give up Biafra agitation if the ongoing political horse trading over his release pans out well, a source involved in the negotiation authoritatively told News Band Newspaper.

The DSS is holding Mr Kanu, a dual citizen of Nigeria and the United Kingdom, over charges of treasonable felony arising from his separatist campaigns for the secession of independent Biafra from Nigeria.

His trial started in 2015 and stalled after he fled the country on being granted bail in 2017.

Kanu’s escape from Nigeria occurred after the military under the leadership of Major General Tukur Buratai (rtd) launched vicious attack in his Afara-Ukwu home in Umuahia.

This resulted to the death of scores of civilians and members of Biafra Security Service (BSS).

He was re-arrested in Kenya in June 2021 to continue his trial.

The trial judge, Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja, had ordered his remand in DSS custody during the duration of his trial.

In April 2022, Binta Nyako struck out eight of the 15 counts in the charge.

The remaining seven counts were also quashed by the Court of Appeal on October 13, 2022, with the judge ordering Kanu’s release.

On October 28, 2022, the appellate court granting a stay of execution on its verdict discharging Kanu, after the federal government filed an appeal at the Supreme Court.

Since Nnamdi Kanu was re-arrested in Kenya and brought back to Nigeria, the insecurity in the South East region has gone so bad that rarely would a day pass without an incident of gunmen attack.

Both security operatives and innocent civilians had been victims during several encounters.

There have been calls by concerned stakeholders for Nnamdi Kanu to be released as this will douse the growing tension in the region.

Recently, over 50 lawmakers in the House of Representatives in Nigeria wrote to President Bola Tinubu demanding for Kanu’s release.

Last week, South East governors and lawmakers added their voice to the long list of stakeholders calling for the release of the flippant separatist leader.

However, this is coming after he reportedly promised to comply with conditions set for his release by the federal government of Nigeria.

Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe, the lawmaker representing Abia-South in the Senate, Wednesday last week, led Senators from the Southeast region to meet the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, over Kanu’s release.

Senator Abaribe told newsmen that the IPOB leader has expressed readiness to play by the rule if granted bail.

According to the lawmakers, Kanu’s release is key to reviving the economy of the south East region.

Abaribe said the “peaceful demand of the IPOB leader had been hijacked by criminal elements, leading to wanton killings of innocent people, including security operatives”.

Senator Abaribe expressed strong believe that the AGF would persuade the federal government to release the separatist leader.

He also revealed that Kanu, whom he had visited at the Department of State Services (DSS) headquarters, is willing to comply with any conditions set by the authorities for his release.

A source privy to the ongoing political horse trading told News Band that some of the conditions that will be presented to Kanu for his release are:

1. He will go underground and never speak on his franchise radio.

2. He will openly denounce and disband the Eastern Security Network (ESN).

3. He will completely disassociate himself from Simon Ekpa, a Finland-based fugitive who runs a parallel pro-Biafra movement.

This, the source said, will enable the federal government to launch a decisive operation against him.

He said: “Yes, Nnamdi Kanu will be released but I can’t tell the actual time.

“His releases will come with a lot of stringent conditions.

“He will not speak on radio Biafra again.

“ESN will be disbanded.

“Kanu will also disassociate himself from Simon Ekpa.

“These are some of the conditions that will be presented to him”, the source said.

Observers wait to see whether Nnamdi Kanu will accept these conditions, which his supporters say are unlikely.

However, pundits observe that with these conditions, it appears that the federal government in no distant time will throw Nnamdi Kanu and his supporters under the bus as this may mark the end of an era, but “may not stop the agitation for Biafra”.

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