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The Department of State Services (DSS), on Tuesday, refuted claims of maltreating Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), in its custody.
DSS Public Relations Officer, Peter Afunanya, alleged that Kanu is treated like a Very Important Person, VIP, in their custody while adding that he has access to medical doctors.
IPOB had alleged that DSS subjected Kanu to starvation and maltreatment in a bid to assassinate him.
However, Afunanya said contrary to IPOB’s claim, Kanu has never been denied a change of clothes, adding that he gets all he wants.
Addressing a world press conference in Abuja, Afunanya said: ‘The Service denies all the inciting allegations by IPOB and states that Nnamdi Kanu is not, in any way, maltreated in custody. Accusations of maltreatment negate the Service’s Standard Operation Procedure on the implementation of rights of a suspect.
‘Nnamdi Kanu enjoys full luxury in the holding facility incomparable to any of its type anywhere in the country. He is accorded full rights and privileges. He is never denied his right of worship or freedom from his select religious practice.
‘Adequate attention is paid to Kanu’s health. He has unhindered access to the best medical care and doctors. Kanu, himself, has confirmed to his visitors that the Service has never, in any way, maltreated him. He even confirmed this to the quartet of Senators Ike Ekweremadu and Enyinnaya Abaribe; Bishop Sunday Onuoha of the Methodist Church, Nigeria and Co-Chair, Interfaith Dialogue Forum for Peace and Ambassador Okechukwu Emuchay, MFR, Secretary-General, Ohanaeze Ndigbo, who saw him on Wednesday, 8th December 2021.
‘The story of Kanu being starved is fallacious. He could not have been starved as he enjoys meals of his choice. That he is not allowed a change of clothing is also false. He is regularly allowed change of clothing as against what is presented to the public by IPOB propagandists. Assuming he is being maltreated, how come his visitors told him he was looking well? All the allegations of violation of his rights as a suspect, victimization and starvation among others are not true.
‘It is unfortunate that some elements have decided to use outright misinformation to represent the state of affairs. Those who make these false stories do so to attract undue attention for the singular purpose of achieving the desired end.”
The DSS spokesman accused Kanu’s lawyers and IPOB of spreading fake and mischievous news against the secret police.
‘Rather than focus on how he should get justice, Kanu’s legal team and some mischievous elements among them have chosen to use fake news to mislead the public. While the Court in its wisdom ordered that Kanu be remanded in the safer DSS Custody, some of his legal representatives, for reasons best known to them, preferred Kuje Prison and have failed to explain the rationale for such choice.
‘It may interest the public to note that a particular lawyer among Kanu’s Team is feasting on the matter such that one can conclude that his interest is beyond getting justice for his client. Be that as it may, the Court has the final say on the matter,’ he added.
The IPOB leader is next expected in court on the 18th of January for the continuation of his trial.
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