Tension in Umuahia as Nnamdi Kanu buries parents

Nnamdi Kanu

The planned burial of parents of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, on Friday has caused tension in Afaraukwu, Umuahia, Abia State.

Mr Kanu lost both parents last year.

Policemen have been seen patrolling the streets while some are said to be around the IPOB leader’s residence in mufti.

Abia police commissioner, Eneh Okon, had said in a press conference in Umuahia on Thursday that the police would not allow members of the group to attend the burial in their regalia or insignia, else they will ‘disrupt the burial’.

The commissioner also ordered that all Close Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras installed in areas leading to Kanu’s house should be taken down.

It is believed that there are about 38 of them. Some are said to have been destroyed.

Kanu had said that his group installed the cameras around his compound ahead of the burial to provide video evidence of any attack by security forces on IPOB members.

In audio messages circulating on social media, IPOB members are said to be preparing to face the police if they were attacked.

Kanu had said he planned to attend the burial but recent developments show he may not be attending.

A group, Imeobi Igbo Forum, recently told the IPOB leader to stay away from the burial venue in order to avoid being noticed.

Addressing journalists in Onitsha, Anambra State, the National Chairman of the forum, Mike Ikegulu-Onugha, said: “Kanu should steer clear of the burial arena until all the issues are resolved.

“He should wait until the coast is clear to come back. The dead must be buried whether Nnamdi is around or not. If he comes home, it is an opportunity for those who are looking for him to get him.

“We should not wait until he returns before the dead is buried. Left for me, the federation government should allow him to come and bury his parents. I wish he will come and bury his parents the way I did mine.

“However, rather than come and get involved in all sorts of trouble and military palaver, it is better for him to keep off.”

Reports said that markets in Onitsha would not be open for business as a mark of honour for Kanu’s parents.