By Gbenga Olarinoye, Osogbo
The Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Matthew Kukah, says pro-Biafra activists are entitled to their agitation and should not be crucified for it.
He also advised the Federal Government to look at the positive side of Nnamdi Kanu, a leader of the pro-Biafra movement and promoter of Radio Biafra now in detention, and draw him closer rather that prosecuting him.
According to Kukah, since every Nigerian has the right to pursue his or her goal in life, the ongoing agitation for Biafra is legitimate.
Speaking on the topic: “The Pursuit of Happiness: Some Thoughts On Human Rights, Freedom And Justice In Nigeria,” at the 41st Convocation Lecture of the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, the cleric advised President Muhammadu Buhari to dialogue with Kanu and his fellow activists, in order to ensure peace.
While stressing that the arrest of Kanu by security operatives forced multitudes across the globe to embark on protests for his release, Kukah argued that no governor in Nigeria could command the number of people that the pro-Biafra leader brought out without any form of inducement.
Kukah said: “This country cannot continue this way. The Movement for the Sovereign State of Biafra, MASSOB, has the right to seek Biafra since we have freedom of expression. The problem of Nigeria should not be with Kanu but with those who let the door open.
“The President of Nigeria or any governor, unless he pays, cannot bring the number of people that Kanu brought out.
“The anxiety of Nigeria should be that a young man (Kanu) who can bring out this great number of people is worth doing business with.”
The bishop called on Nigerians, especially politicians, to strip themselves of lust for power and greed for material gain, saying they do not bring happiness.
While saying that some greedy individuals had truncated the peace and happiness that are due to the world, he emphasised that “the world can provide for the need of everybody but cannot provide for the greed of everybody.”
In the meantime, Ohanaeze Ndigbo,yesterday, met with the two main pro-Biafra groups, MASSOB and the Indigenous People of Biafra,IPOB, where the Federal Government was asked to release Kanu unconditionally from detention.
While addressing newsmen at the end of the meeting, which had other groups, including Igbo Youth Cultural Movement,IYCM,Bilea Human Right Initiative,BHRI,United Eastern Congress,UEC,Lower Niger Congress,LNC, in attendance,Secretary General,Ohanaeze Ndigbo,Joe Nworgu said,”We met with MASSOB,IPOB and other groups to demand the unconditional release of Nnamdi Kanu.”