According to reports, the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has raised the alarm over the life and deteriorating health condition of their leader, Nnamdi Kanu, in Kuje prison, Abuja.
The group’s spokesman, Emma Powerful, said: “We got information from Nnamdi Kanu’s lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor concerning the state of the health of our leader. He elaborated on the severe ill health of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, noting that Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is having severe abdominal pains and occasional tightening of the chest because of persistent coughing. There is no medicine at the prison’s medical facility and the health workers there are not qualified to diagnose the ailment due to poor facilities.”
In a statement from IPOB signed by Emma Powerful, the group inferred that the Department of State Services (DSS) is behind the life-threatening health condition of Kanu.
“This condition started while in DSS custody when he lost a lot of blood through the nose as a result of the physical and mental torture he underwent. DSS has it on record about the bleeding which prompted them to send in an external doctor to examine him while in their custody.
“Nnamdi Kanu nearly had a stroke because of the ordeal and as the doctor told him, had the blood not drained from his nose he would have had a blood clot in the brain resulting in paralysis. DSS are aware of all these. Any journalist can contact them to confirm it,” the statement read in part.
The group averred that the DSS is deliberately covering up the true state of Kanu’s health condition from Nigerians while doing nothing significant to treat his ailment.
Continuing, the statement said: “No wonder the DSS and the prison authorities are no more allowing anybody to visit Nnamdi Kanu again in the prison, so that people cannot ascertain the health condition of our leader. The health condition of our leader is deteriorating so bad that he doesn’t eat the food given to him anymore.”
The statement, however, maintained that Nnamdi Kanu remains undaunted and focused on the restoration of Biafra and praying for other IPOB members outside not to relent or stop the quest for the restoration of the Biafra nation.
However, the Nigeria Prison Service (NPS) yesterday, denied IPOB’s claims, insisting Kanu, was “hale and hearty”, contrary to reports of ill-health.
There were reports that Kanu had bled through the nose yesterday, consequent upon alleged beating by officials. But, the spokesman of the NPS, Mr Enobore Francis, maintained that the Service does not beat inmates in its custody across the country.
In a telephone conversation, Francis said: “Kanu has never been beaten by anybody, and he is hale and hearty.
“We don’t beat prisoners or inmates; we have close to sixty-eight thousand prisoners in our custody across the country.”
According to him: “Where a prisoner develops any illness, we do our best to provide medical attention. “Ours is to provide care and support to those brought to us.”
The Director of Radio Biafra is facing a six-count charge bordering on treasonable felony, maintaining unlawful society, among others.
He has remained in custody since October 2015, when he was arrested by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) in Lagos.