10 November 2018
A senior officer of Nigeria’s secret police, the Department of State Services (DSS) called Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) a “coward and a liar” as the official described the circumstances of pro-Biafran activist’s escape from his home in September last year.
Kanu and IPOB are agitating for the secession of Biafra (mainly southeast Nigeria) from the rest of the country. His father’s compound in Afaraukwu, Abia State was raided by the Nigerian military in September last year. Kanu disappeared following that raid, tagged “Operation Python Dance”, and resurfaced a few weeks ago in Jerusalem. He has since claimed in an interview on Israeli TV and in broadcasts on Radio Biafra that he was “evacuated by Biafran security and intelligence” during the raid and sustained injuries that forced him to lie low for over a year. 28 of Kanu’s followers, including his dog Jack, reportedly died in the raid.
But the DSS officer, in conversation with Naijiant.com, dismissed Kanu’s claims. He said that the activist got wind of the military operation from intelligence sources, who may be sympathetic to Kanu’s cause or opponents of the regime of President Muhammadu Buhari. The security operative claimed that Kanu fled moments before the area surrounding his home was cordoned off by the soldiers, went on the run, before ending up in Israel, possibly via the UK. Kanu holds dual Nigeria/British citizenship.
The DSS source said the IPOB leader only came up with the “cock and bull story” to mask the fact that “he ran away like a coward” before the raid and “left his followers to die”. There has been some speculation that Kanu’s escape from Nigeria was facilitated by the former “militant” from the Niger Delta, Asari Dokubo. Kanu has praised Dokubo in each of his three radio broadcasts following his reappearance.