THE leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, has condemned the sit-at-home order and “sacrilegious killings” in the Southeast, according to the Governor of Anambra State, Chukwuma Soludo.
In a post Soludo published on his verified Facebook page on Saturday night, the governor said he visited Kanu on Friday and met him in good spirits.
The governor’s visit was part of wider consultations with critical stakeholders in search of lasting peace and security in the region.
Kanu was said to have expressed sadness over what Soludo said he called the “sacrilegious killings” of innocent persons, kidnappings and all forms of criminalities, including the brutal enforcement of the sit-at-home order perpetrated by sundry groups claiming to be acting for or on behalf of IPOB.
Soludo said, “He assured that if the opportunity arises, he would be glad to personally broadcast to his followers to maintain the peace.”
The Nigerian government has severally held IPOB responsible for various attacks and killings in the Southeast.
IPOB, which operates alongside its security arm, the Eastern Security Network (ESN), has claimed responsibility for some of the attacks on the region, but has also rebuffed many.
The region has witnessed increasing attacks and killings in the past two years.
Public facilities, security officers, travellers and residents have been largely affected by the attacks.
The IPOB sit-at-home order mandates all people in the five states that constitute the region to remain indoor on Mondays, an action that usually paralyses socio-economic activities in the states.
The order often makes all streets and communities in the region deserted.
Residents, including travellers, who disobey the order are usually killed or harmed.
The Southeast is one of the four regions in Nigeria facing severe security challenges. Others are the Northwest confronting banditry and terrorism, the Northcentral battling with the herders-farmers crisis, and the Northeast facing flashes of terror attacks.
Since his arrest in June 2021 in Kenya, the court has remanded Kanu at the State Security Service’ (SSS) facility in Nigeria as he faces trial bordering on terrorism and treasonable felony, among others.
The Southeast leaders have made frantic efforts to secure his release, but the efforts have been fruitless.
While in Ebonyi State last week, President Muhammadu Buhari told the region’s leaders who pleaded for his release to allow the court to decide his fate.
Buhari had made a similar remark to the Southeast leaders in Abuja.