Nnamdi Kanu accuses Army of killing 28 IPOB members while trying to kill him
The IPOB leader has called on Israel to make sure Biafra stands as an independent entity in Africa
Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, has accused the Nigerian Army of killing 28 of his followers during an attempt to kill him in 2017.
Kanu had not been seen in public since an alleged attack on his father's compound by soldiers on September 14, 2017, until he was pictured praying at the Wailing Wall of Jerusalem, Israel, on October 19, 2018.
Since his re-emergence, Kanu has addressed his followers and vowed to return to the country to lead a boycott against the 2019 general elections.
During a recent interview on Israeli TV Channel 1, the IPOB leader said the Army killed 28 people while trying to kill him over a year ago. He said he only escaped death because he was evacuated from the premises before soldiers could get to his bedroom.
He said, "I arrived in Nigeria, in Lagos, on the 14th of October 2015, and I was arrested for demanding for freedom for my people because I run Radio Biafra in London and the authorities didn't like it.
"They kept me locked away for 19 months despite two court judgements to set me free. They eventually granted me bail with very stringent conditions. When I came out, I continued to preach to my people. I continued to practise my Jewish faith.
"And one day, the Nigerian Army came to my house to kill me. They killed 28 people in the process. To kill me, they killed 28 people.
"My people evacuated me before they could get to my bedroom. They took me away and smuggled me out of Nigeria. I needed some time to recover which I did and then, I had to make my way to Israel. I'm relieved that I managed to make it to the only place that I feel safe in the whole world."
The IPOB leader further called on the Israeli government to live up to its obligation to defend people of the Jewish faith all over the world.
"We're being persecuted, we're suffering as a people, and it is the responsibility of Israel to make sure Biafra stands as an independent entity in Africa," he said.
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Kanu's troubles with the Nigerian government started when he was arrested by the Department of State Security (DSS) in 2015 and spent two years in custody until he was granted bail on health grounds in April 2017. He faces charges of treasonable felony.
Nnamdi Kanu is a distraction - FG
In the time between Kanu's mysterious disappearance and resurrection in Israel, IPOB had relentlessly alleged that he was in the custody of the government who was illegally holding him.
While speaking during an interview last week, the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, described Kanu's re-emergence as a distraction to the country.
He said, "This is the same man that was claimed to be held by the military and I remember at the height of this saga, some many people wanted to hold the federal government responsible for the whereabouts of Nnamdi Kanu.
"I remember saying that the military did not kidnap him, he wasn't killed. All these are just distractions frankly speaking. I don't think it's something we should dwell too much on. There are other pressing issues of the nation we should discuss.
"No government will waste too much energy or effort. I think the government will be making sure that the country is safe."
In an earlier reaction to Kanu's threat to bring hell with him to the country, President Muhammadu Buhari's Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, said there is no reason to worry about the wanted IPOB leader.