There was apprehension among members of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) in the South East, yesterday as the IPOB leadership accused President Muhammadu Buhari of releasing a known terrorist against a court order asking him to release IPOB Director, Nnamdi Kanu.
In a statement entitled “Muhammadu Buhari frees a terrorist (Kabiru Umar aka Kabiru Sokoto), but disobeys order on unconditional release of Nnamdi Kanu’’, signed Barrister Emma Nmezu and Dr. Clifford Chukwuemeka Iroanya, spokespersons for IPOB condemned the act.
The statement read in part: “Retired Major General Muhammadu Buhari, the man who committed treason on 31st December 1983, was reported to have freed from prison Mr. Kabiru Umar popularly known as Kabiru Sokoto. We recall that on December 20, 2013, Hon. Justice Adeniyi Ademola convicted and sentenced Kabiru Sokoto to life imprisonment having found him guilty of masterminding the 2011 Christmas Day bomb blast that killed over 44 persons and injured 75 others at St. Theresa’s Catholic Church at Madala in Niger State. Most of the dead and injured persons were Biafrans.
Prior to his sentencing, Kabiru Sokoto was arrested on January 14, 2012 but escaped from Police custody in Abuja on January 16, 2012 and was re-arrested on February 10, 2012. Now, Muhammadu Buhari has used his presidential powers and authority to release Kabiru Sokoto the terrorist and mass murderer.
“On the other hand, Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) was abducted in Lagos by agents of Department of State Services (DSS) on October 14, 2015 and was subjected to physical and mental torture to the point of near-death. He was later flown to Abuja and kept in DSS detention center where the torture continued unabated for upwards of three months.
He was arraigned at the Magistrate court and later at High court on frivolous charges. On both occasions, the presiding Magistrate and Judge struck out the cases and ordered that Mr. Nnamdi Kanu be released unconditionally. Up to this moment, those court orders have not been obeyed and have not been challenged by the DSS.
However, the Nigerian prisons Service insisted on Wednesday that Kabiru Sokoto was still in prison.