Charles Nwoke, Abuja, Nigeria
Nigeria President, Muhammadu Buhari has alleged that a serving member of the country’s National Assembly is among those financing secession movements in the country.
Buhari stated this during his national broadcast on Friday to mark Nigeria’s 61st independence anniversary.
The Nigerian president revealed that the recent apprehension of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Adeyemo alias Sunday Igboho, two separatists agitating for the creation of independent countries of Biafra and Oduduwa out of Nigeria, exposed high-profile financiers including the legislator.
However, Buhari did not mention the name of the lawmaker he was referring to.
President Buhari, who is currently serving his second tenure in office, addressed Nigerians on a number of national issues bordering the country as the nation marks her 61st Independence Anniversary.
Reacting over the secession agitations rocking different parts of the nation, the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, said Nigeria’s unity is not negotiable “and its ultimate success can only be achieved if we all come together with a common goal of having peace and prosperity for our nation.”
He insisted the recent arrests of Kanu and Igboho “have revealed certain high-profile financiers behind these individuals.”
He added that “We are vigorously pursuing these financiers including one identified as a serving member of the national assembly.
“We shall continue to work on dialogue based solutions to address legitimate grievances. But we remain ready to take decisive actions against secessionist agitators and their sponsors who threaten our national security.”
Kanu’s Idependent People Of Biafra, IPOB, has been accused of using violence to call for the creation of a Biafra Republic for the Igbos of South-east Nigeria. The group has been declared a terrorist organisation and blamed for some of the attacks on security agencies and government facilities in the South-east and South-south geopolitical zones. Kanu is currently being detained and prosecuted in Nigeria.
Igboho is agitating for the creation of Oduduwa Republic, a Yoruba nation of South-west Nigeria. He is currently being detained in Benin Republic at the request of the Nigerian Federal Government which wants him extradited for onward prosecution in the country.
Apart from the claim of identifying secession movement sponsor, the Buhari Les government recently said it was investigating terrorism financiers but would not reveal their identities yet.
He has been criticised over his perceived ‘soft handling’ of killer herdsmen, Islamic terrorism and bandits in relation to his heavy-handed approach at crippling the activities of separatists in the country.