Stephen Ukandu, Umuahia
A member of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu’s legal team, Prince Mandela Umegborogu, has raised an alarm over the alleged relocation of a tuberculosis inmate near the cell where the Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, is detained at the Abuja headquarters of the Department of State Services, DSS.
Kanu has remained in DSS custody since his extraordinary rendition from Kenya in June 2021.
Kanu’s lawyer who raised the alarm Monday after a routine visit to the IPOB Leader, expressed deep worry over the grave health implications of having a tuberculosis patient near Kanu’s cell.
He said that Kanu was highly infuriated about the sad development which he alleged could be a deliberate attempt to infect him with an infectious disease.
“I met with Mazi Nnamdi Kanu today (Monday) at the DSS headquarters Abuja, and he was complaining to me that they brought somebody suffering from tuberculosis close to his cell block.
“The patient, Emeribe Uduma, was arrested in Ohafia on September 15, 2022 , and handed over to the DSS which brought him to Abuja.
“Onyendu (Kanu) complained to me that that boy was suffering from tuberculosis, and that he was moved near his cell block so that he would infect him and others with tuberculosis.
“You know that tuberculosis is very infectious. Do they want to infect him so he will die in detention?
“Onyendu also told me that he (Kanu) was yesterday (Sunday) bleeding from his nose. He requires serious attention by his personal physician.”
The lawyer further said that when DSS officials came to fetch Kanu after their meeting, he raised the same complaint before them but they denied having any tuberculosis inmate around the facility.
“When we finished discussing and some DSS personnel came to take him back to his cell he raised the matter before them.
“He told them that it is immoral and inhuman to do certain things even if it’s an order from above. He told them to have sense of their own and refuse to obey instructions that are inhuman and illegal.
“I also confronted them and told them it was wrong to bring a tuberculosis patient close to people especially those in a confinement where you don’t have ventilation. But they said they had tested everybody and nobody had tuberculosis but Onyendu told them it’s a lie.”
Reacting on the development, Kanu’s family has called on the international community to prevail on the Nigeria Authorities not to allow Kanu die in detention.
The family which spoke through Prince Emmanuel Kanu, expressed worry over the development and re-newed the call for his release in compliance with various court orders.
“They should bear in mind that Kanu is an innocent man who has been set free by the Court. Any plan to bring him down through infectious disease should be dropped.
The international community should prevail on Nigeria to ensure nothing happens to him.”
Meanwhile efforts to get reaction from the DSS were not fruitful as its Spokesman could not be accessed as at the time of filing this report.
Kanu’s Special Counsel, Aloy Ejimakor, took to his Twitter handle to protest the development.
“Today, my associate, Barr Mandela met with Onyendu #MNK at the DSS. He reports that MNK directed me to make it public that he had an episode of profuse nose-bleed yesterday & that the DSS has transferred a detainee diagnosed with tuberculosis to his cell block. This is ominous,” Ejimakor tweeted.