From Desmond Mgboh, Kano
The Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG) has warned that any attempt by President Muhammadu Buhari to release the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, outside the court processes will reduce Nigeria to a lawless state where criminals commit crimes and ask their leaders to press for their release.
‘We especially note, with a deep sense of concern, the unrelenting desperation by certain interest groups in the South East to subvert the due process of justice and tamper with the judicial processes since Kanu’arraignment,’ the group declared.
In a press conference Monday in Kano, the coalition, which consists of rights and civic organisations in Northern Nigeria, expressed strong opposition to the release of Kanu, even as they tasked President Buhari to reclaim his statesmanship by refusing to interfere with the principles of separation of powers and the independence of the judiciary.
The coalition, through its spokesperson, Abdul-Azeez Suleiman, warned that ‘the North would not remain idle when its people are deliberately targeted and killed while the alleged perpetrators are shielded by their leaders.’
They added that the North would hold President Buhari directly responsible for the blood of Northerners unlawfully shed through the activities of Kanu in the event that he succumbs to the Igbo pressure to release the leader of IPOB.
‘The North has today realised that he( Buhari) places more premium on the pursuit of votes and political popularity than he does for the sanctity of lives of Northerners and security personnel who stake their lives in the service of the nation,’ they stated
The coalition confessed that the composition of the Igbo group that visited Buhari at Aso Rock has since vindicated their position that the criminal activities of Kanu are fully supported by the vast majority of Igbo elders, politicians, religious leaders, traditional rulers, business persons and the larger population of the South East.
The coalition demanded the arrest and prosecution of all those Igbo leaders and any other group or individual involved in the complicity to get Kanu freed by subverting the course of justice.