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50 Lawmakers Appeal To Tinubu For Nnamdi Kanu’s Release

A group of about 50 members of the House of Representatives, representing various regions and political parties, have come together under the banner of Concerned Federal Lawmakers for Peace and Security in the South-East.

They have petitioned President Bola Tinubu to use Section 174 of the 1999 Constitution of Nigeria (as amended) and Section 107(1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015, to secure the release of the detained leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.

These lawmakers believe that releasing Kanu will help restore peace in the South-East region.

In addition to calling for Kanu’s release, the legislators urged President Tinubu to initiate a presidential peace campaign to tackle the myriad issues affecting the South-East.

These requests were detailed in a three-page letter, dated June 19, 2024, and signed by the concerned lawmakers.

The signatories include Hon. Obi Aguocha (Abia), Hon. Ikenga Ugochinyere (Imo), Hon. Aliyu Mustapha (Kaduna), Hon. Midala Balami (Borno), Hon. Afam Ogene (Anambra), Hon. Abiante Awaji-Inombek (Rivers), Hon. Dominic Okafor (Anambra), Hon. Etanabene Benedict (Delta), Hon. Shehu Dalhatu (Katsina), Hon. Chinedu Emeka Martins (Imo), Hon. Matthew Nwogu (Imo), Hon. Muhammed Buba Jagere (Yobe), Hon. Peter Aniekwe (Anambra), Hon. Koki Sagir (Kano), Hon. Amobi Oga (Abia), Hon. Gwacham Chinwe (Anambra), Hon. Uchenna Okonkwo (Anambra), Hon. Abdulmaleek Danga (Kogi), and Hon. Osi Nkemkama (Ebonyi).

Other lawmakers involved are Hon. Mark Useni (Taraba), Hon. Alexander Mascot (Abia), Hon. Philip Agbese (Benue), Hon. Ginger Onwusibe Obinna (Abia), Hon. Zakari Nyampa (Adamawa), Hon. Jamo Aminu (Katsina), Hon. Emeka Idu Obiajulu (Anambra), Hon. Nnabuife Chinwe Clara (Anambra), Hon. Ukodhiko Jonathan (Delta), Hon. Akingbaso Olarewaju (Ondo), Hon. Lilian Obiageli Orogbu (Anambra), Hon. Marcus Onobu (Edo), Hon. Chinedu Obika (FCT Abuja), Hon. Billy Osawaru (Edo), Hon. Ojuawo Rufus Adeniyi (Ekiti), Hon. Okoli Ngozi Lawrence (Delta), Hon. Ezechi Nnamdi (Delta), Hon. Alozie Munachim Ikechi (Abia), Hon. Nkwonta Chris (Abia), Hon. Nnamchi Paul Sunday (Enugu), Hon. Obetta Mark Chidi (Enugu), Hon. Tochi Okere Chinedu (Imo), Hon. Uguru Emmanuel (Ebonyi), Hon. Joseph Nwaobasi (Ebonyi), Hon. Onwugbu Befford Anayo (Enugu), Hon. Atu Chimaobi Sam (Enugu), Hon. Sunday Cyriacus Umeha (Enugu), and Hon. Anthony Adepoju (Oyo).

The lawmakers requested that President Tinubu instruct the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Prince Lateef Fagbemi, SAN, to use his ‘nolle prosequi’ powers under Section 174(1) of the Constitution and Section 107(1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 to release Kanu and halt his trial, emphasizing that such a move would promote peace in the South-East.

The legislators argued that this action is overdue and essential for fostering dialogue and addressing the underlying issues behind the South-East agitations.

They noted that a similar gesture was extended in the cases involving Omoyele Sowore and Sunday Igboho.

Highlighting the current unrest in the South-East, characterized by insecurity, economic downturn, and displacement of families, lawmakers argued that tackling these issues would demonstrate President Tinubu’s dedication to the principles of democracy: rule of law, justice, and fairness.

They also suggested that this approach would set a precedent for resolving issues through dialogue rather than prolonged legal battles, thereby promoting peace, economic revitalization, and a renewed sense of belonging among South-East citizens.

The lawmakers expressed optimism that the President would respond favorably, enhancing his administration’s legacy of prioritizing national unity, peace, and progress.

The letter partly read, “Your Excellency, We are concerned Members of the House of Representatives of the Federal Republic of Nigeria with a strong belief and trust that the RENEWED HOPE agenda of His Excellency and the various positive reforms would be seen and felt by all. It is at the backdrop of the foregoing that we the undersigned hereby beseech Your Excellency to direct the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Prince Lateef Fagbemi SAN to invoke his powers of nolle prosequi under the provisions of Section 174(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as Amended) and Section 107(1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 and cause the release of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from detention and discontinue his trial which we collectively believe is long overdue and would be instrumental in opening the door for much-needed conversations surrounding peace reformation and inclusivity as well as addressing the issues that led to the agitations, especially at this time Nigeria is going through several Constitutional reforms.

“Your Excellency, we resolutely believe that this singular act can serve as a pivotal gesture towards national unity as it would address some of the Political, Security and Economic concerns in the region. It would encourage stakeholders from the Southeast to engage more actively in the national discussions on the Renewed Hope Agenda, thereby promoting inclusivity and addressing long-standing grievances.

“This we belief will also help in dismantling the apparatus of violence and restiveness that has plagued the region, allowing for a focus on economic growth and development. Also, . is coming at a time the nation-state is under enormous pressures, including but not limited to unemployment, insecurity, hunger and poverty, thereby deescalating tension from all sides.

“Moreso, we as key actors in the renewed hope agenda of Your Excellency are not unmindful of the fact that Your Excellency has extended this gesture through the office of the Attorney General in the charge involving Omoyele Sowore wherein, he was charged with treasonable felony in Charge No FHC/ABJ CR/235/2019, Sunday Igboho, etc. All these recorded tremendous successes, especially the crisis within the North-Central, North-Eastern, and South-South regions, not forgetting peace efforts in the Niger-Delta region, which have helped in so many ways.

“The establishment of the North East Development Commission, Ministry of the Niger-Delta, Niger-Delta Development Commission, Presidential Amnesty, Various Host Community Laws, etc were all commitments to show good faith to the plight of the people as well as resolving regional conflicts.

“It is therefore our conviction that fixing the challenges in the South-East would go a long way in changing the narrative and showcase your commitment to upholding the principle of Rule of Law , Justice and Fairness, which are the bedrock of our democracy. It would also set a precedent for addressing issues through dialogue rather than prolonged political cum judicial persecution and brass show of executive lawlessness.

“We, therefore implore your excellency to adopt this approach and save the south-east and pave way for a national conversation to restore, safeguard and better the resources and economic activities in the south-east. The primary responsibility of the government is the protection of lives and property. Facilitating the release of Nnamdi Kanu would demonstrate a commitment to upholding the principles of justice and fairness, which are the bedrock of our democracy.

“Your Excellency, the benefits of such a bold and compassionate act are manifold. It would pave the way for peace initiatives, economic revitalization and a renewed sense of belonging among the citizens of the southeast. It would also enhance your administration’s legacy as one that prioritizes national unity, peace and progress.

“We are hopeful that you will consider this request with the gravity it deserves and take the necessary steps to bring about a new era of peace and inclusivity in Nigeria. Thank you, your Excellency for your attention to this important matter and we look forward to a positive response.

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