The Defence Headquarter in a Press statement on Friday said that Mr. Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), is not in the custody of the Nigerian military.
The statement was issued by Maj. Gen. John Enenche, the Director of Defence Information.
“Nnamdi Kanu is not in the custody of the military,” he said
According to the DHQ, contrary to reports, the Nigerian Army did not raid the residence of Kanu.
“Nobody raided Kanu’s home and I stand to be justified, not from the information I got. I was watching it live, I was monitoring it live and also speaking with them on the ground.
“The people that came out there that I saw were the Biafra security service and Biafra National Guard.”
“I think I later confirmed that there was nothing to actually justify them legally to mount roadblocks. I saw the militancy, nobody told me and I saw the action there. We are still investigating.”
When asked if the military would declare Kanu wanted since his whereabouts is unknown, he said that; “It is not the responsibility of the military to declare Nnamdi Kanu wanted.”
He also added that the Nigerian Armed Forces did not proscribe or declare IPOB a terrorist group, adding that the proscription of the group followed due process.
“The military did not proscribe IPOB. Due process was followed to proscribe it. The job of the military was to diagnose security issues and warned the public of consequences and that is part of our media operations.
“We did our media operations very well, otherwise that weekend would have been the longest weekend in this country and we are also very careful choosing our words and we know the law very well,” he added.
Regarding the Operation Python Dance in the South-East, he said;
“For the past couple of days since the operation started, the feedback I have been getting from that place is that yes, they are happy.
“Some of them were actually afraid even before the operation started not from our troops but from the people that we actually getting them fighting, people that are actually intimidating them. But now, they have a lot of relief.
“We have our sources of information as information outfits of the armed forces. We also get information from the general public using our own sources as a form of checks and balances.”
“Other countries passed through this, if you go into history, before getting to where they are as developed countries today.
“Like in China, you see one policeman inside a car, you hardly see a military man outside and it depends on the developmental process and what you passed through.
“That’s why in simple terms, I will tell you that we are not alarmed at all.
“For example, the last terrorist attack in the UK, 24 hours after the attack, the government asked the military to take over the area.”
“If the UK government can tell the military to take over, to back up the Police, I think we are just about 100 years old of amalgamation and we about 57 years old, it’s not out of place, “he stressed.
He also expressed disappointment over the position of some legal practitioners on the military involvement in the IPOB issue.
“Of course, there will be competing demands on who is to do what by the military, the executive, the legislature they are all arms of the government and they all have responsibilities,” he said.
“The statement that came through me is not at par at all with what the Chief of Army Staff came out to clarify. People had mindset and they were In a hurry to attack the military because of their mindset and because of that it is a pity to say that somehow some people lost their reputation,” he added.
According to the general, various operations and exercises under the DHQ were being sustained in the North East, North West and North Central and other parts of Nigeria.