Foremost Nigerian constitutional lawyer and Elder statesman, Prof. Ben Nwabueze, has indicated that the South East governor may have betrayed the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, and sabotaged the disposition he showed for peaceful resolution of issues concerning the agitation for Biafra during the meeting he held with South-East governors in Enugu on August 30.
This was revealed in a statement Prof. Nwabueze made available to journalists in Enugu on Monday, in which he narrated what happened at the August 30 meeting between Kanu and the governors.
He said, “On 30th August, 2017, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, Evangelist Elliot Ugochukwu-Uko and I met with the South-East Governors Forum.
“The meeting was chaired by the current Chairman of the Forum and Governor of Ebonyi State, Dave Umahi, who, in his conduct of the meeting, exhibited his characteristic sagacity, candour and forthrightness, tempered with friendliness.
“Perhaps charmed by the things said by the chairman and the way he conducted the meeting, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, on his part, showed an accommodating disposition for an amicable resolution of the crisis and more specifically a disposition to reconsider the threat to stop or disrupt the 2019 elections and the Anambra State governorship election on November 18, 2017, but emphasized that the decision did not lie with him alone and that the leadership of the Indigenous People of Biafra must be carried along.
“Accordingly, it agreed to meet with the leadership of IPOB in order to try to secure their agreement and support. Regrettably, while the follow-up meeting was being arranged, the attack on Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s home in Umuahia by soldiers of the Nigerian Army on September 10, 2017, occurred as reported in the news media, which, expectedly, triggered clashes between the IPOB supporters and the Army in Aba, Umuahia and other places, resulting in the death of, or injury to, several people.”
Reacting to the ugly development, the IPOB leadership indicated its intention not to attend the scheduled meeting.
“Despite all this, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu made it known that, in the spirit of a search for amicable resolution of the crisis, he would still attend the planned meeting, now fixed for Friday, September 15, 2017.
“However, a day or so before that date, another attack on his Umuahia residence by soldiers, armed with guns and armoured vehicles, was reported in the media, which caused Nnamdi Kanu to renounce his intention to attend the planned meeting.
“It seems unreasonable and unfeeling to expect him to attend the meeting when the casualties included two of his cousins.”
Prof Nwabueze revealed that he had arrived in Enugu from Lagos for the meeting on Thursday 15 September but without the IPOB leadership, especially Nnamdi Kanu, the purpose of the meeting had been defeated.
So I went back back to Lagos, he added.
Nwabueze however asked the governors to reconvene the meeting with Kanu at a future date “when the tension caused by these developments had quietened down.”