Southern and Middle Belt Leaders Forum (SMBLF), including prominent groups like Afenifere and Ohanaeze, have jointly appealed to President Bola Tinubu, asserting that the release of Nnamdi Kanu is in the best interest of Nigeria.
In a communique issued after their meeting in Abuja, the leaders expressed concern over the potential repercussions of Kanu’s continued incarceration on peace and security in the Southeast region.
Part of the communique read: “The SMBLF condemns the continued incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu and its implication on peace and security in the South East.
“The SMBFL therefore calls on President Tinubu to ensure that rule of law is allowed to prevail on this matter and all court rulings on this matter are obeyed.
“The release of Nnamdi Kanu is in the interest of the entire country as the leadership of Ohanaeze Ndigbo has promised that they will work with him to restore peace in the region.”
The leaders, led by Chief Edwin Clark, condemned the establishment of an ethnic militia by Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore in Nasarawa State, warning against condoning such actions and emphasizing the need for maintaining the rule of law.
In addition to the call for Kanu’s release, the leaders expressed deep concern about the escalating insecurity across the country.
They highlighted dangerous conditions in Plateau, Ekiti, Kwara, Kogi, Benue states, and the Federal Capital Territory (Abuja).
The leaders called for a comprehensive review of the national security architecture and urged increased federal government support for state and community policing efforts.
Prominent leaders in attendance at the meeting included the President-General of Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, Chief Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu; Chief Ayo Adebanjo of Afenifere; National President of Middle Belt Forum (MBF), Dr Pogu Bitrus, and National Chairman of Pan-Niger Delta Forum (PANDEF), Senator Emmanuel Ibok Essien.
The communique noted the presence of several elder statesmen, former governors, former members of the National Assembly, former ministers, and other leaders from the respective regions.