Kanu: Firm contacts UK govt as soldiers shut Imo markets

Aloy Ejimakor, the special counsel for the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, has revealed that his partners in the United Kingdom are engaging the British government at the highest level over the case.

The lawyer, who spoke to The PUNCH on Tuesday, said the Department of State Services had yet to allow the IPOB leader to sign documents that would give him access to consular support.

Kanu, who is facing charges bordering on treasonable felony, was recently brought back to the country from Kenya.

He was to appear before the Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday, but the session did not hold as the DSS failed to produce him.

Ejimakor told our correspondent that he would be seeing Kanu on Wednesday (today).

He said, “In the interim, our colleagues in the UK at the Bindmans Law Firm are ramping up their engagements with the highest levels of the British government.

“I expect that sooner than later, those engagements will yield the diplomatic protection to which Kanu is entitled as of right as a British national in good standing.

“My confidence is hinged on the countervailing measures the UK had taken in the wake of the failed extraordinary rendition of Umaru Dikko in 1984. As a citizen, Kanu is entitled to more than Dikko got as a mere resident.”

Another counsel of the IPOB leader, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, said in a statement titled, ‘UPDATE’, on Tuesday, “Given the fact that our client, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, was not produced in court yesterday (Monday) and serious safety concerns being entertained by all and sundry, and more especially in keeping in line with subsisting court order that directed for specific visiting hours and days, may I respectfully put the world on notice and millions of our supporters that I will personally be visiting our client, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, on Thursday, July 29, 2021.”

Meanwhile, soldiers on Tuesday prevented traders at the Timber and Building Materials markets in Orlu, Imo State, from opening for the day’s business.

Most of the traders at the two markets had on Monday refused to open their shops in solidarity with the IPOB leader, who is facing trial at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Angered by the development, the soldiers who were manning a checkpoint close to the markets barred the traders from opening their shops for any commercial activity.

One of our correspondents was informed by the traders that the soldiers ordered the security men in markets not to open the entrance gates.

While the soldiers continued with their stop-and-search duty in front of the markets, traders who came as early as 7am met the entrance gates under lock and key.

The traders expressed anger at the development, and the soldiers told them to go home until further notice.

The Chairman of the Building Materials Market, Emmanuel Ibegbulem, who confirmed the development in a telephone interview, said he was on his way to the state Ministry of Commerce and Industry to resolve the issue.

When contacted, the spokesman for the 34 Artillery Brigade Command, Obinze Owerri, Captain Babatude Zubiruo, said that he was not aware of the development. PUNCH

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