Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information, says the federal government tolerated Nnamdi Kanu’s excesses and hate speeches for too long, hence the decision to clamp down on him and his Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Mohammed, who spoke at a press conference on Monday, said Kanu is the master of hate speech and leader of a “band of lawless people”, adding that there was no way such acts should go unpunished.
“The self-imposed IPOB leader, Nnamdi Kanu, is the master of hate speech. His supporters should listen closely to his inciting remarks and cruel statements. If such does not constitute hate speech, then tell me what hate speech is,” Mohammed said.
“We have tolerated the excesses of Kanu for too long. Mention one country in the world where an organisation has set up a military organisation, confronted the national army and engaged in exploiting of people without consequences.
“There is nothing like genocide anywhere in our country today. What we have in the south-east is a clampdown on a band of lawless people who have no regard for the laws of the land.”
Mohammed said the IPOB’s next line of action will be to begin disseminating false pictures and videos as a tool for cheap propaganda.
“Now they are writing to the government and the national parliaments of some Western nations to give the impression that they are victims of violence orchestrated by the government, hence they need protection,” Mohamed said.
“Some of the tools that have been employed by IPOB include blatant lies and cheap propaganda, and the medium of choice for the organisation is the social media.
“IPOB has harvested gory videos and pictures from other lands and the distant past, which they are now circulating via the social media, to deceive the international community.”
This is the first public statement by Lai Mohammed since the defence headquarters designated the IPOB as a terrorist organisation on Friday, September 15.
In 2013, Mohammed, then the National Publicity Secretary of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN),criticised the Goodluck Jonathan-led federal government for proscribing Boko Haram and Ansaru as terrorist organisations.