How I and my relatives were harassed at Kuje prison - Kanu's sister

How I and my relatives were harassed at Kuje prison - Kanu's sister

- A sister to the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra Nnamdi Kanu has shared her ordeal with soldiers of the Nigerian army during one of her visits to her brother in prison custody

- Princess Tonia Kanu said she and some of her uncles were harassed by 14 security officers at Kuje prison facility on Tuesday, September 6

How I and my relatives were harassed at Kuje prison - Kanu's sister
Nnamdi Kanu with his mother, Sally Kanu and siblings
Source: Original

A sister to the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra has the manner at which she and some other members of her family faced in the hands of some soldiers.

Princess Tonia Kanu while speaking to said she had gone to Kuje prison to pay her brother a visit on Tuesday, September 6, when 14 security operatives – 12 soldiers and 2 others on mufti – accosted her and some other family members.

Princess said: “Actually what really happened is that I went to Kuje to see my brother as usual! Coincidentally I met three of my uncles there… They also came to see my brother and they had already filled their form."

She said because her uncles were at the facility before her, they were also privileged to meet with Kanu before it was her turn.

“After they finished with him, on their way coming out I was about going in… they told me not to be in a haste that my brother have told them to wait for me so they can drop me in any close place for me to pick a cab and go home,” Princess said.

Continuing, Kanu’s sister said after the visitation, there had just left the facility when the heavily armed men with a white Toyota Hiace bus with registration number BV 718 RSH double crossed them.

“They ordered all of us to come down and enter their own vehicle, which we did and they kept us there for more than 30mins until my uncle asked one of the officers to explain what was happening and what our offence was.

Princess said the officer in question said they should remain quiet and exercise patience as they will be well informed of their offence when they get to where they would be taken to.

"So, immediately I wanted to make a call with my phone but then, they asked me not to try it.

"Then one of the men on mufti said we look familiar (me and my uncle), he said it seems he sees me on TV. That was when my uncle, Emeka Ndumele told him that he is Nnamdi Kanu’s brother," Kanu's sister said.

READ ALSO: 5 canisters of tear gas thrown into Nnamdi Kanu’s cell in Kuje prison – Lawyer

"They left us in the bus with the armed soldiers while they went to one corner to make calls. After a very long call, they came back and said we should drop our mobile phone numbers and addresses.

Princess told that they obeyed the officer directive, without argument.

She said the officers also informed them they were acting on “orders from above”.

She also said although the security officer did not beat or try to torture them, she felt embarrassed and disappointed.

"One of the officers had Ejiofor on his name tag, I don’t know what they want from us, if they want my brother to die of hunger there because I am the one that goes there to know what he needs almost every day.

"Although they never mentioned my brother’s name...but according to my uncles when they were inside the prison with him, the one on mufti was working around there monitoring them and their discussion with my brother.

“Then he sat beside them as if he is also waiting to see his own inmate, not knowing he was probably there as an informant. It was when those soldiers surrounded us then he appear from behind a building and he was also the one making all the calls.

Despite the ordeal, Sonia said: “The incident cannot spoke me from going to visit my brother in Kuje, unless they want him to die there."

READ ALSO: Starvation in Nigeria: IPOB raises alarm

Attempts to reach army spokesperson Sani Usman on the incident was futile as his mobile line did not connect.

Also Usman is yet to reply an inquiry sent to his phone on the matter.

But counsel to Kanu, who spoke to said the incident was a total ambush and hostage situation perpetrated by the military.

Kanu’s lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor said: “A team of soldiers numbering about 12, fully armed to the teeth apparently acting through an informant was trailing Nnamdi Kanu’s family members.”

Stating that the team of soldiers were led by one Major Yushau, Ejiofor said the news of temporary abducted of Princess and her family member is shocking.

“It is to say the least, the height of brazen violation of our laws. While under prison custody, the law allows all inmates including Nnamdi Kanu to receive visitors including family members, provided that the visitors subject themselves to requisite security screening before gaining entrance,” Ejiofor, Kanu's lawyer said.

READ ALSO: Biafra Agitation: Nnamdi Kanu becomes president in Kuje prison

He further noted that all intending visitors are also to be guided by the rules and regulations operational in the prison custody.

“This development is a clear attempt to ban Nnamdi kanu from receiving visitors including his family members, as the intendment is to instil fears on people that may wish to pay him visit.

“When this is achieve, his life will then be exposed to more dangers in detention. Especially, against the backdrop of visible but repeated threats to his life.

“We must challenge this abduction, intimidation and harassment in a court of law, as it is a clear violation of the constitutional rights of the citizens that paid him visit.

“We are still investigating further details provided with a view to coming up with the appropriate cause of action, deserving in the circumstance. This lawlessness and impunity must stop.

“We find it extremely unacceptable as it offends all known democratic norms," he concluded.


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