the Leaders of the Southern and Middle Belt Forum (SMBLF) have condemned the continued incarceration of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, on treason charges by the Nigerian Government.
SMBLF which stated this in a communique issued recently at the end of its meeting in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital warned of the implication of Kanu’s incarceration on the peace and security in the Southeast region.
In the meeting chaired by Chief Edwin Clark, SMBLF also condemned the setting up of an ethnic militia by the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore recently in Lafia, Nasarawa State.
It warned President Bola Tinubu’s administration not to condone the actions.
According to the group, condoning it could force other ethnic nationalities to establish their own militias.
The communique reads in part, “The SMBLF condemns the continued incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu and its implication on peace and security in the South East.
“The SMBFL therefore calls on President Tinubu to ensure that rule of law is allowed to prevail on this matter and all court rulings on this matter are obeyed.
“The release of Nnamdi Kanu is in the interest of the entire country as the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo has promised that they will work with him to restore peace in the region.”
The leaders condemned the state of insecurity across the country, lamenting that most recently, “Plateau, Ekiti, Kwara, Kogi, Benue states, including the FCT (Federal Capital Territory Abuja) have become some of the most dangerous places to live in”.
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“It is inconceivable that criminal groups can come in and out of our communities, yet those who are responsible for safeguarding the society cannot get into same hideouts or anticipate their activities,” it said.
The communique said, “The worsening state of insecurity again reinforces the call for the rejigging of the whole security architecture of the country; in particular the urgent need for more federal government interest and encouragement towards ongoing state and community policing efforts around the country.”
The regional leaders in attendance include the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; Chief Ayo Adebanjo of Afenifere; National President of Middle Belt Forum (MBF), Dr Pogu Bitrus, and National Chairman of Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Senator Emmanuel Ibok Essien.
According to the communique, the meeting also had in attendance “several elder statesmen including former governors, former members of the National Assembly, former ministers and other leaders from the respective zones”.