Ageing Octogenarian father of detained Director of London-based Radio Biafra, Prince Nnamdi Kanu, has made a passionate appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari to free his son unconditionally.
His Royal Majesty, Eze Israel Kanu, 83, the paramount ruler of Afara Ukwu Ancient City in Umuahia Ibeku, made the appeal today in his palace, lamenting that the continued detention of his first son has aggravated his health condition.
Kanu and his wife, Ugoeze Nnenne, told journalists, who on learning that Nnamdi hails from Umuahia thronged their country home, that they have been having nightmares since their son was hauled into detention.
Nnamdi, a political activist and Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), was nabbed in Lagos on Saturday, October 17, 2015, by Nigeria’s secret Police, the Department of State Security (DSS).
The Political Economics/Contemporary History graduate of Guilhall University, London, has since been arraigned in an Abuja Magistrate Court for treasonable offences but is still being detained. He is an unrepentant advocate of a free Biafran nation from Nigeria.
His detention has sparked off massive protests in the South East where protesters are demanding for his release. The protests have so far swept through Delta, Anambra, Enugu, Abia, Imo and Rivers State.
Nnamdi’s senile father said he was worried that his son was still being detained, adding that the family was yet to be formally informed of his offences.
“I was highly amazed and shocked that my son who was on his way to visit me was arrested. I have been trying to find out why he was arrested and I have gotten no answer. I learnt he is being detained in Abuja. I have been sick since I received the sad news,” Eze Kanu said. He spoke in Igbo language.
Denying any knowledge of his son’s activism with particular regard to his fight for a free Biafra, the monarch, however, maintained that his son was an adult and reserves the right to follow his mind.
He said if his son was being held for expressing his opinion, the authorities should have a second look at his incarceration and free him because Nigeria was in a democracy where people exercise their right to freedom of expression.
He disclosed that he only mustered the strength to talk to the Press because his last son, Prince Emmanuel Kanu, whom he dispatched to Abuja, came back with the cheering news that he was able to see Nnamdi and that he was fine.
“The detention of my son has subjected me to serious mental torture and psychological pain, it is weighing me down and has aggravated my health condition. I pray they release him now,” he said.
“Nnamdi, my son, is not a trouble maker,,” Eze Kanu repeatedly said, while appealing for his unconditional release. Responding to the massive protests that have greeted his son’s arrest, Eze Kanu said it was a sign that many people believed in him and advised the protesters against being violent in their protests.
The first class royal father who said he has been a peacemaker all his life and a three-time elected Councillor to represent his people in Umuahia North, argued that even in families, some members hold contrary views and are not expelled from the family because of their views. He pleaded that Nnamdi should not be crucified for holding his personal views about Nigeria.
In her contribution, Nnamdi’s mother, Ugoeze Nnenne Kanu, equally appealed for her son to be freed. She said his continued detention was causing her unimaginable pains as she feared for his life.
“As a mother, my son’s detention is giving me sleepless nights. I will not deny my son because of his ordeal. In a democracy, we have freedom of expression and someone must not be harassed or intimidated for holding an opinion. I am appealing to President Muhammadu Buhari to free my son. That is all I desire for now and I put all my trust in God that He will fight this battle for us” she said.
Princess Chinyere Kanu, younger sister of Nnamdi and Prince Emmanuel, his younger brother were present while their parents spoke with newsmen.
Source: Uche Eze