Biafra: Nnamdi Kanu’s arrest cause cracks, leadership crisis in IPOB
The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, is said to be witnessing some cracks within its leadership hierarchy following the rearrest of the group’s leader, Nnamdi Kanu, NEWSMEN gathered.
Kanu, who fled Nigeria in 2017 following his trial for treason, was rearrested last month in an African country believed to be Kenya.
The pro-Biafra agitator allegedly went to Kenya to receive cash donations geared towards his secession mandate, only to be arrested and repatriated to Nigeria.
NEWSMEN gathered that Kanu and some of his closest allies had issues over the control and handling of IPOB’s finances, a situation that made him traveled to embark on the Kenyan trip without their knowledge.
Kanu was said to have lost the trust of his closest “generals” over their handling of IPOB’s finances, the reasons he allegedly cut them off before heading to Kenya.
Crisis after Kanu’s arrest.
Sources within IPOB, after Kanu’s rearrest have pointed at internal crisis within the pro-Biafra group.
In July 2021, a few weeks after Kanu’s arrest, Simon Ekpa was widely reported to have been appointed as the agitator’s successor on Radio Biafra.
In a swift reaction, Emma Powerful, spokesman of IPOB, debunked the claims. Powerful had explained that Ekpa was appointed as a reporter like other broadcasters on the pro-Biafra platform (Radio Biafra).
A few weeks after Ekpa’s appointment, the group disassociated itself from the reporter due to an alleged ideological differences.
Powerful, in a statement, said Ekpa refused to sign some documents in line with the guidelines of the pro-Biafra group.
Prior to his arrest, Kanu had encouraged IPOB members to commence a more radical movement as against their initial approach.
The IPOB leader, during his broadcast on Radio Biafra, had on several occasions threatened that his followers may resolve to civil disobedience in their push to actualize Biafra.
The so-called ideological issue became obvious when the former Deputy leader of IPOB, Uche Mefor distanced himself from the alleged violence perpetrated by members of the pro-Biafra group.
Mefor had accused Kanu of building a “culture of lies, of deception and of blackmail,” with reference to those lives destroyed and who cannot speak for themselves.
He said: “See how they falsely label and destroy people’s character with impunity.
“When I said that what goes up must come down, I meant every bit of it. Whatever anybody sows shall he reap.
“They shall be alive to experience the same pains they inflicted on those vulnerable who are unable to speak for themselves.
“The forces of heaven and earth shall continue to work in dissonance and in discordant pattern for all of you. Time shall definitely tell.”
IPOB’s response to alleged crack after Kanu’s arrest.
When NEWSMEN sought clarification over the alleged crack within the pro-Biafra group, the group’s spokesman, Emma Powerful insisted that IPOB was intact.
In an exclusive chat with our correspondent, Powerful stressed that there is no crisis within the leadership of the group.
According to Powerful: “There is no crack in IPOB, our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu built IPOB in a strong rock. There is nothing anybody can do to short-change IPOB’s determination towards this divine fight for Biafra’s freedom. IPOB is Intact and not shaking.
“There is no issue in IPOB leadership and IPOB members worldwide.”
Powerful also dismissed the claims by Mefor, stressing that he is no longer a member of IPOB.
He said: “Uche Mefor has resigned from IPOB; he is no longer an IPOB member.”
When asked why Mefor resigned, Powerful responded: “Resignation of who? Because we don’t know about Uche Mefor, it’s his personal decisions and we have nothing to say about that.”
However, there is anxiety that Kanu may not regain his freedom or get out of his current predicament alive.
The Senior Pastor of Divine Mercy Church, Olatobiloba Peters, had recently said he “sees Kanu in a coffin.”
Amid this prophecy, the IPOB leader had cried out that his life was in danger while he remains in the DSS custody.