By Anayo Okoli.
UMUAHIA — LESS than one month after soldiers invaded the Afara-Ukwu, Umuahia, home, a combine team of police and soldiers, again Sunday, invaded the IPOB leader in search of what they called “technical items”.
The younger brother of the IPOB leader, Prince Emmanuel Kanu told journalists in a telephone interview that the raid was carried out even when the military was yet to account for the whereabouts of his brother and leader of IPOB.
Vanguard learnt that the operation was carried out by the police with back-up by soldiers.
Emmanuel Kanu alleged that during the raid, household items, including television sets, generating sets, clothes, among other belongings of the royal family of Afaraukwu Ibeku were carted away by “the invaders” carted away.
Kanu claimed that the palace was “looted” during the raid, and called on the international community to prevail on the Nigerian security forces to stop further raiding of his father’s palace and to also account for the whereabouts of the IPOB leader.
But Desk Officer of Operation Python Dance in charge of Operation Python Dance 11 in Abia State, who refused to disclose his identity, confirmed the raid in a telephone interview but maintained that it was a joint operation with other security agencies.
He however, denied that household items were removed from the home of the Kanus, saying that “the things removed may be technical items” and that “somebody was arrested with weapon in the compound”.
According to him, the joint operation was based on intelligence report at the disposal of the security agencies which he said indicated that arms were hidden in the compound.
Enquiries made at the 82 Division, Nigeria Army, Enugu, directed the reporter to Abia State Police Command for information on the raid.
But phone calls put across to the Abia police Commissioner, Mr. Anthony Ogbizi was not through as his number was said to be unavailable while the spokesman of the Command Mr. Geoffrey Ogbonna, did not pick his call when called.
Last week the Director, Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Sani Usman, described leader of Indigenous People of Biafra,IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, as a “certified 419ner” without means of livelihood.
This was even as he said those following the separatist leader were in what he called a “one-chance vehicle.”
Usman, giving a closing remark, at the end of a two-day media workshop for the Directorate of Army Public Relations, held in Abuja, insisted that Kanu was a criminal waiting to face the wrath of the country’s law over his crimes against it.
The man is a certified 419ner, and that is why those of them following him have entered into one-chance vehicle, “he said, adding:” I try as much as possible not to say anything in the media because I know it would be subject to so many misinterpretations.”
“This is somebody standing trial in a criminal case, whether we like it or not, we want to stand against the truth,no matter how long, the truth will come to pass on the 17th, “he said, referring to the October 17 date the IPOB leader has with an Abuja high court.
” This is an individual without means of livelihood. If I speak, and so what? I can speak eloquently and I can speak like him and also have my own group, that’s exactly what is happening, “he insisted.
“So, what is the essence of our education as a people and as humans? You know that somebody is a criminal and you believe in him,” he fumed.
The Army spokesman expressed dismay with people seeking to know the whereabouts of the IPOB leader from the Army, asking why they can’t ask his supposed lawyer or his younger brother, who he said, openly said in the media that his brother was into hiding.
“There was an allegation,somebody went to hide. Initially they said 20 people died, then they said five people died,and this and that. And I have addressed the issue of the video.
“Now, I can’t remember the day,but anybody who watched the Channels interview, Nnamdi Kanu’s younger brother said that he was in hiding and he knows where they are.
” And one lawyer came up that he has taken the Chief of Army Staff to court. Now, who gave you the brief? You said you do not know where he(Kanu) is. Now, who gave you the brief? And the media is asking us where is Nnamdi Kanu, why not ask the man that so who gave him the brief to take people to court when he does not know where the man is?” He further said.
He regretted that the Army was always put on the defensive when it shouldn’t have been so.