A First Republic parliamentarian and Minister of Aviation, Mbazulike Amaechi, has called on the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.) to intervene in the trial of of the leader of the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, who is currently standing trial for treason.
Amaechi urged the president to nip the growing tension and insecurity in the Southeast in the bud by granting an unconditional release of the IPOB leader.
The 93-year-old statesman, who made the plea during a visit of South-Eastern leaders under the aegis of Highly Respected Igbo Greats to the State House in Abuja, lamented that businesses and education are crumbling as a result of the “painful and pathetic” insecurity situation in the Southeast.
“I don’t want to leave this planet without peace returning to my country. I believe in one big, united Nigeria, a force in Africa. Mr President, I want you to be remembered as a person who saw Nigeria burning, and you quenched the fire,” he said.
Continuing, the First Republic parliamentarian pleaded for a political understanding, rather than the military solution being deployed by the Federal Government.
He requested that if Kanu was released to him as the only First Republic Minister still alive, “he would no longer say the things he had been saying,” stressing that he could control him, “not because I have anything to do with IPOB, but I am highly respected in Igboland today.”
Amaechi said twice he had interfaced with Nnamdi Kanu in the past, and the latter rescinded orders earlier given on civil disobedience.
Reacting to his statement, Buhari stressed that an unconditional release of Kanu runs contrary to the doctrine of separation of powers between the Executive and Judiciary.
While saying that such a demand is quite heavy, the president pledged to give it consideration nevertheless.
“You’ve made an extremely difficult demand on me as leader of this country. The implication of your request is very serious.
“In the last six years, since I became President, nobody would say I have confronted or interfered in the work of the Judiciary. God has spared you, and given you a clear head at this age, with a very sharp memory. A lot of people half your age are confused already. But the demand you made is heavy. I will consider it,” he said.
Members of the visiting delegation comprised former Governor of Anambra State, Chukwuemeka Ezeife; Bishop Sunday Onuoha of the Methodist Church; former President of Igbo socio-cultural group, Aka Ikenga, Goddy Uwazurike and Tagbo Amaechi.