The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF) on Friday demanded in the national interest, the immediate release of Nnamdi Kanu and a stop to any further persecution of Sunday Igboho, who is currently on a conditional release in Benin Republic.
SMBLF also warned that the continued detention and trial of Kanu on charges of terrorism and treasonable felony while known Boko Haram terrorists are being given VIP treatments and hosted in Government Houses is not only provocative and perfidious but a bizarre double standard on the part of the Nigerian State.
In a communique issued at the end of the group’s meeting on Thursday under the Chairmanship of the Leader and Elder Statesman, Chief Edwin Clark, it said that more disconcerting is the fact that the women and children rendered widows, orphans, and displaced by the terrorists, that are now being gratified by the Federal Government and its security agencies, are wallowing in wretched IDP camps.
The delegations of the constituent Organisations of the SMBLF were respectively led by Chief Ayo Adebanjo, Leader of Afenifere (South West); Dr. Pogu Bitrus, President of the Middle Belt Forum (Middle Belt); Professor George Obiozor, President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo, represented by the Secretary-General, Ambassador Okey Emuchay (South East); and Senator Emmanuel Ibok Essien, FNSE, National Chairman of the Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF (South South).
The meeting was also attended by former governors, ministers, federal and state legislators, top politicians and professionals from the Southern and Middle Belt regions, including Senator Jonah Jang, Chief Cornelius Adebayo, Senator Femi Okurounmu, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu, Professor Ihechukwu Madubuike, Professor Charles Nwekeabu, Chief Gary Igwariwey (former PG Ohanaeze), Senator Bassey Ewa Henshaw, HRH Eze Cletus Iluomanya, Dr. Solomon Arase, Chief Supo Shonibare, Chief Sola Ebiseni, Chief Edozie Ezeugwa, Eze Dr. Ibe Nwosu, Engr. Bekinbo Dagogo-Jack, Nze Ozichukwu Chukwu, Elder Steven Bangoji, Dr. Akin Fapohunda, Dr. Alabi Femi, Dame Betty Igbeyi, mni, Hon. Dr. Stella Dorgu, Nella Andem-Ewa, SAN, Dr. Ebun Sonaiya, Hon. Edward Pwajok (SAN), Dr. Alex Ogbonnia, Eze Charles Olisakwe, Hon. Keftin Amiga, CP Iorbes Ihagh (rtd)- PG MUT, Dr. Mrs. Esther Mangzha, Mrs. Beatrice Eze, Elizabeth A. Jibrin, Engr. Bayo Adenekan, Elder Mac Emakpore, Chief Douyi Douglas-Naingba, Akin Osuntokun, Hon. Jonathan Asake (SOKAPU), Comrade Jare Ajayi and Ken Robinson, among others.