The United kingdom to provide support for Nnamdi Kanu
The British government has stated its willingness to provide “consular assistance” to Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra, who was arrested by the Federal Government of Nigeria on Sunday. Dean Hurlock, Head of Communications at the British High Commission in Abuja, confirmed this in an exclusive interview with The PUNCH on Wednesday. Kanu, who was born on September 25, 1967, is a dual citizen of Nigeria and the United Kingdom. Following his detention and extradition from a foreign country, he was arraigned before Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja on Tuesday for terrorism-related allegations and has since been detained in the custody of the Department of State Services.
Hurlock told The PUNCH that Nnamdi Kanu was neither arrested or extradited from the UK, where he was residing after jumping bail in Nigeria in 2017. “The British High Commission in Abuja is presently seeking clarity from the Nigerian authorities regarding the circumstances of the detention. “With regard to any questions about whether the British High Commission is providing assistance in this case, we can confirm that the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office stands ready to provide consular assistance,” a British official told The PUNCH, adding that the British Government “expects any trial or legal proceedings to follow due process.”
When our journalist inquired about “consular assistance,” the British official sent him to the UK guidebook titled “Support for British Nationals Abroad: A Guide.” In September 2017, the Buhari regime classified IPOB’s operations to be acts of terrorism and lawlessness. Kanu had previously been arrested and imprisoned, but was released from Abuja’s Kuje Prison after completing bail conditions. Later, the IPOB leader jumped bail, fled the country, and operated from abroad before being apprehended on Sunday. Kanu had also founded the Eastern Security Network, which the police have accused of being the masterminds of attacks on police stations, prisons, and symbols of democracy in the zone, although Kanu has disputed the claims. Kanu was facing 11 charges before he skipped bail in 2017, including terrorism and treason.
Terrorism, treasonable felony, running an illegal society, publishing libelous material, illegal possession of firearms, and inappropriate importation of products are all crimes. The case has been rescheduled for continuation of trial on July 26 and 27, 2021, while Kanu has been remanded with the Department of State Services. Attempts to contact Kanu’s lead counsel, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, were futile as of the time of reporting this article.