Representative of District 139 in the Texas House of Representatives, Jarvis Johnson, has, in a letter, appealed to US Members of Congress to urgently intervene and urge the Nigeria government to release the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.
Johnson said Kanu had, on May 12, 2021, traveled to Nairobi, Kenya, as a British citizen and was legally admitted. And that on June 19, 2021, agents of Nigerian government abducted him and tortured him for eight days before his illegal rendition to Nigeria.
Johnson’s letter, which was dated May 10, 2023, and marked, ‘Re: Appeal for Your Urgent Intervention in Urging the Government of Nigeria to Release Nnmadi Kanu from his Extraordinary Rendition, was made available to this paper yesterday by special counsel to IPOB leader, Aloy Ejimakor, reports The Guardian.
Stressing that time is of the essence, the US lawmaker said: “There is now growing fear/concern that the Muhammadu Buhari administration intends to assassinate or cause Kanu’s disappearance before May 29, when it plans to hand him over to the incoming administration.
“For months now, it is public knowledge that Kanu’s health condition has deteriorated. He suffers from a serious heart condition and other ailments for which he is not getting enough medical attention.
“Appeal to the Nigeria Government to release the IPOB leader dated back to June 27, 2021.”
Describing Kanu as the leading advocate of Igbo struggle for self-determination, Johnson further stated that his persecution by the Nigerian government has intensified since 2015, when he (Kanu) visited Nigeria from London, the United Kingdom.
He further stated: “First, few days after his arrival, on October 14, 2015, he was arrested in Lagos by agents of the Nigerian government.
“He was held in solitary confinement by the Department of State Security (DSS). Ultimately, he was granted bail by the Nigerian courts.
“After his release, he resided primarily in his ancestral home in Abia State, Nigeria, with his parents, siblings and other extended family members.”
“On October 10, 2017 to October 14, 2017, the Nigerian military attacked and invaded his home. In the process, dozens of people were killed, many were injured and maimed, while many others were captured alive and have disappeared.
“Fortunately, Kanu escaped the invasion and returned to his London residence to reunite with his nuclear family.
“On May 12, 2021, he traveled to Nairobi, Kenya, as a British citizen and was legally admitted into the country.
“On June 19, 2021, he was abducted by agents of the Nigerian government. He disappeared in Nairobi and was tortured for eight days.”