The fugitive leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, who is now cooling his heels in the custody of Department of State Services (DSS) was arrested in Ethiopia, an online media outlet, THEWILL, has revealed.
According to the newspaper, Kanu was arrested in Ethiopia and extradited to Nigeria over the weekend.
According to the newspaper, in the first week of June, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, , had written a letter, through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, to the Government of Ethiopia seeking its cooperation to help track down Kanu in the country.
Nigeria had earlier contacted INTERPOL for the arrest and extradition of Kanu to Nigeria to face his charges pending before an Abuja’s court.
READ ALSO :What Nnamdi Kanu did wrong – Reno Omokri
The government informed the Ethiopian Government that Kanu was on its soil and requested its cooperation with the INTEPOL.
Kanu was thereafter intercepted in Ethiopia by joint security operatives of the government and INTEPOL and extradited to Nigeria over the weekend, before his appearance in court on Tuesday, where he was ordered to be remanded in DSS custody.
Meanwhile, British High Commission spoke on Nnamdi Kanu’s arrest, claims he was not arrested in the UK as new report details how he was arrested.
Dean Hurlock, a spokesperson of the British High Commission, told TheCable that while they can confirm Kanu’s arrest, he was not picked up in the UK where he is based.
The IPOB leader, who is also a UK citizen, had been in the UK since 2017 when he fled Nigeria.
Abubakar Malami, minister of justice and attorney-general of the federation (AGF), had told journalists on Tuesday that he was picked up on Sunday due to “the collaborative efforts of Nigerian intelligence and security services”.
The AGF did not say where exactly the secessionist leader was arrested, but Hurlock told TheCable when contacted that it was outside of the UK.
“We can confirm that Nnamdi Kanu was not arrested in the UK for extradition purposes,” he said via text message
In a related development, reliable security sources told this Newspaper yesterday that Kanu was rearrested in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia by Interpol following an intensive search for him by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) in collaboration with its foreign counterparts.
According to the sources, when, following the storming of his parent’s compound in Afaraukwu, Abia State, by a detachment of soldiers on 14th September 2017, Kanu ‘disappeared’ virtually into thin air, the federal government felt concerned. Since both, his Nigerian and British passports were still in the custody of the Federal High Court in Abuja, there were strong suspicions that Kanu got the support of the United Kingdom High Commission in Nigeria for his escape. That was later proved to be the case.
A security source, who spoke to this Newspaper last night, said the federal government was further incensed when a global human rights agency sent a letter to the Permanent Mission in New York, asking Nigeria to either produce Kanu or explain his whereabouts.
“Only a few days later, Kanu surfaced in Jerusalem, Israel, with a photograph taken at the ‘Wailing Wall’ where he granted one of those his stupid interviews,” said the source.
The security source explained that whereas Kanu breached all the conditions for which he was granted bail by the Federal High Court in Abuja on 29th April 2017, he orchestrated a campaign of calumny against the country.
First, he went into hiding, creating the impression that he was killed by soldiers and when he eventually appeared, he became more emboldened in his criminal activities,” she said.
Kanu, according to the security source, was able to travel to many countries around the world because he holds a British passport.
“With that, he thought he was invincible. From wherever location, he was operating from (and I can tell you that he has not been to the UK in the past two years), he used the power of social media to cause havoc by making incendiary broadcasts,” she said.
With the money Kanu reportedly garnered through fundraising to “establish his phantom Biafran Republic”, according to the source, Kanu lived large, and that eventually proved to be his undoing.
“What he did not know was that the security agencies were on his trail. His lifestyles consisted mostly of going out with different women, buying expensive pieces of jewelry, chartering aircraft, and drinks. And because he got many gullible people who were donating to his so-called IPOB, he had so much money to play with such that he even hired lobby groups for his propaganda activities,” the security source said.
The source explained that the security agencies have intercepts of how Kanu formed the Eastern Security Networks (ESN) and how the members became a terror group as well as his directives to IPOB operatives that bordered on incitement to violence. “We know those he collaborated with to instigate the killings against the police in the South-east,” said the source who added that it was on Kanu’s instruction that certain prominent politicians from the Southeast should be visited with violence whenever they are sighted abroad.
The source cited the specific example of former Deputy Senate President Ike Ekweremadu.
After trailing Kanu for several months and infiltrating his ranks, the security agencies finally pinned him into Addis Ababa where he was arrested by Interpol and then extradited to Abuja last sunday.
Kanu returned yesterday to the court of Justice Nyako that had in late 2017 granted him bail.
The remand order was sequel to an application by A Federal Government lawyer, Shuaibu labaran.
Ruling on the request for remand in the custody of the DSS, Justice Nyako, held that the prosecution should inform Kanu’s lawyer of his re-arrest and remand in the custody of the DSS.
The Judge subsequently adjourned till July 26 for a continuation of trial.
Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, had on Tuesday disclosed during a joint Press Conference with the DSS and Nigeria Police, that Kanu was arrested on Sunday, June 27, 2021.
However, the briefing was silent on where he was arrested.
Apart from pushing for penalties for the offence of jumping bail, the Federal Government is also holding Kanu responsible for various acts of violence recently in the South-East.