The Coalition of South East Youth Leaders (COSEYL) has made an appeal on behalf of Igbo youths, urging President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to unconditionally release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of IPOB, from detention by the DSS, drawing parallels with the recent release of Sunday Igboho by authorities in Benin.
Sunday Igboho, through a statement released on his Instagram account, expressed his gratitude to former President Olusegun Obasanjo, Professor Wole Soyinka, Ayo Adebanjo, and other prominent Yoruba individuals for their contributions to his release.
That being said, COSEYL stood firm in its belief that the Federal Government had a part to play in the release of Sunday Igboho.
‘We are very aware that the Federal Government played a significant role to secure the release of Sunday Igboho from detention in Benin republic’, COSEYL claimed.
According to COSEYL, ‘It amounts to selective justice for the federal government to facilitate and secure the release of Sunday Ighoho from detention leaving Mazi Nnamdi Kanu who is an agitator like Sunday Igboho.’
The statement further read: ‘Agitation is not a crime under the law. It is the rights of any citizen who feels shortchanged or aggrieved to agitate for his or her rights.’
‘We are very surprised that the FG saddled with the responsibility of protecting and providing security for Nigerians will know the right thing to do in other to restore security in the South East zone which is to unconditionally release Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from DSS custody as ordered by the Federal Court of Appeal and will refuse to do it. This amounts to double standard.’
COSEYL went on to claim that the South East’s escalating insecurity is, in part, a result of Kanu’s prolonged detention.
‘The insecurity in the South East geopolitical zone is because of the unlawful incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu and the marginalization of the people of South East in the scheme of things.’
‘The Federal Government marginalization, maltreatment and unprovoked attacks on Igbos is the major reason for the call for a referendum by the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB.’
‘People do not just start agitating just for agitation sake. Something serious must have led to the agitation.’
‘We call on President Tinubu to as a matter of urgency release the leader of the Indigenous people Of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu the same way the FG facilitated the release of the President Tinubu’s brother and tribesman Sunday Ighoho from Beninese authorities.’
‘What is sauce for the goose is also sauce for the gander. The people of South East are earnestly waiting to receive their son Nnamdi Kanu in their alms.’
‘His release is paramount to restore the peace and security which has eluded the South East zone for this long years.’
After being forcibly taken from Kenya and delivered to Nigeria in June 2021, Kanu has remained incarcerated at the Abuja headquarters of the Department of State Services (DSS), despite court judgments mandating his immediate and unconditional release.
In July, Igboho was taken into custody in Niger Republic as he tried to escape to Germany, prompted by a DSS raid on his Ibadan home.