VIDEO: IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu is “safe and sound in London”, Nigeria Foreign Affairs Minister Geoffrey Onyeama says at UN General Assembly in New York Updated for 2021

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Updated: March 3, 2021


The leader of the Indigenous People’s of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, who disappeared last year after security forces stormed his family residence in Abia state, is well and in London, United Kingdom, the Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, said on Friday in New York.

At a press briefing at the United Nations headquarters in New York on Friday afternoon, Mr Onyeama was asked by TODAY NEWS AFRICA‘s Simon Ateba “where is Nnamdi Kanu?”

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The minister did not give a direct answer, but quoted the former governor of Abia State, Uzor Kalu, as saying in a recent interview that Nnamdi Kanu was “safe and sound in London and no one should worry about him”.

Onyeama said he was only repeating what Kalu said that Nnamdi Kanu who disappeared last year was in London but gave no answer of his own.

He insisted that he was not quoting himself but was only quoting Kalu, adding that if the information was not correct, the quote was not from him, but from someone else.

Orji Uzor Kalu, former governor of Abia state

Kanu disappeared on 14 Seprember 2017 after Nigerian soldiers stormed his home in Afara-Ukwu Ibeku, Umuahia, Abia State.

His legal team, family, friends and supporters claimed the IPOB leader was either killed in the invasion by the army or was abducted and detained by the soldiers.

Nnamdi Kanu

But the army has said that Kanu was not in its custody.

The Federal Government of Nigeria proscribed IPOB on September 20, 2017, just days after Kanu disappeared.

Since his disappearance, many have been wondering about his whereabouts. 

On Friday, Onyeama was asked about his whereabouts. He said the question about his whereabouts was interesting and simply quoted Uzor Kalu, saying that he is well and in London.

The interaction can be found in the video below. He replies the question from the 43rd minute of the video. But the question comes about two minutes earlier. Watch the video below.

Onyeama addressed journalists on Friday, to preview Nigeria priorities for the 73rd UN General Assembly high-level week.

He said the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s top focus would be “to communicate to the global community what we have been doing in Nigeria, challenges we face, achievements that we’ve made and our road map for the future”.

Mr Onyeama, who noted that Nigeria was on full election mood, listed President Buhari’s achievements in the areas of security, the fight against corruption and the economy.


Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, addresses journalists at the United Nations headquarters in New York on Friday, 21 September 2018. Photo: Emmanuel Ikodor, TODAY NEWS AFRICA

He said Boko Haram, the deadly Islamist group that has been wreaking havoc in Nigeria’s northeast region, as well as Cameroon, Niger and Chad since 2009, had been significantly degraded, although not completely crushed. 

“It’s still not completely over, but the group has been very significantly degraded,” he said during a press briefing at the United Nations headquarters in New York.

He listed other security challenges, including clashes between herders and farmers in the middle belt and militant agitations in the oil-rich Niger Delta region, but said the government had successfully dealt with them.

Mr Onyeama praised President Buhari’s fight against corruption, funds recovered, the whistle-blower policy, but acknowledged that funds stolen and stashed abroad were hard to repatriate even after court orders due to complications from foreign governments.

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He also praised the administration for its economic successes, including in agriculture. He said the government has also been paying close attention to education with social investment programs.

Nigerian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, addresses journalists at the United Nations headquarters in New York on Friday, 21 September 2018. Photo: Emmanuel Ikodor, TODAY NEWS AFRICA

Onyeama said President Buhari who would be in New York for the UN General Assembly would hold high level interactions, including bilateral meetings with several heads of state and government, but did not mention them. He did not also disclose specific events the Nigerian leader would be attending.

On the arms deal with the United States, he said Nigeria paid upfront and the combat jets would be delivered by 2020. He was not sure of how much was paid, only recollecting that it could have been between $100 million and $200 million.

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Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba
Simon Ateba covers the White House, the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions for Today News Africa in Washington D.C. Simon can be reached on simonateba@todaynewsafrica.com

6 COMMENTS

  1. The head of Onyeama clan Chief Onyeama na Eke in Enugu State will turn in his grave after hearing your foolish statements about the one fighting for your liberation

  2. Omg! This man is simply a twin brother of Lucifer himself! God will never spare you people for the lives you have killed and the sufferings you have subjected the masses only to go to international arena to lie and smile like all is well. Don’t worry when the poor have no more good to eat, they will come after you demons!

  3. I can see that Nigeria and British Government give Oji and Onyeama bride and also Oji showing IPOB that he is among the team that sent military in Igbo Land, but without IPOB seeing Nnamdi Kanu there no election in Biafra land even in Nigeria, if Nnamdi Kanu is in London let them allow him to show face or even Queen Elizabeth kidnapped him, let them tell us= IPOB

  4. lies from the pits of hell
    They have murdered Nnamdi Kanu and his Parents for speaking out against the oppression of his people
    Where are the keepers of Democracy?
    All Igbo Saboteurs who connived with the Reptilian President of Nigeria to convert Nigeria into a Military Regime with virulent Ethnic Bigotry for the Igbo will pay someday.

  5. Onyeama is a fool,
    Because he’s in APC he denied know where about of his own tribe brother.
    let take it this way: what if biafra come today what will be ONYEAMA’s position.
    THINK TWICE.

  6. What kind of human are you as a leaned person you chose to joke with the life of your brother whose his house was invaded and many people was killed by the Nigeria military and you answered in that manner. If you don’t find and solve the problem Nigeria will experience war.

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