A member of the House of Representatives, Ben Igbakpa (PDP Delta), has said the allegation by President Muhammadu Buhari that a member of the National Assembly is financing a secessionist movement has put Nigerian lawmakers on terror watch list in Ghana.
The lawmaker, who represents the Ethiope East/Ethiope West Federal Constituency of Delta State, while raising a point of privilege on Tuesday, said he was detained for four hours at the airport in Ghana.
President Buhari had in his 1 October Independence Day speech said the government is investigating financirs of the Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Adeyemo.
“The recent arrests of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Adeyemo, and the ongoing investigations being conducted have revealed certain high-profile financiers behind these individuals. We are vigorously pursuing these financiers including one identified as a serving member of the National Assembly,” Mr Buhari said.
Coming under order 6 rule 2 and section 17 (A) of the legislative house powers and privileges Act 2017, Mr Igbakpa narrated his ordeal in Ghana, claiming that he was informed that Nigerian lawmakers have been placed on a watchlist in Ghana.
“On Saturday, I had to honour an invitation to Ghana for a wedding. Mr speaker, it will amaze you what I faced in the hands of Ghanaian officials.
“I got there, they kept me for about four hours, and they are trying to confirm something. I stayed at the airport for four hours, missed the wedding that I went there for and at the end of the day one of them walked up to me and said sir,
‘We are sorry, because there is an announcement in Nigeria that a member of parliament is sponsoring terrorism. We are out on red alert to ensure that no member of parliament from Nigeria come here to hide or to cause trouble.”
He said the failure of Mr Buhari to name the alleged financier is placing all the 469 members of the National Assembly as prime suspects.
The lawmaker prayed that the president should name the suspected financier and prosecute him/her.
Mr Igbakpa also prayed that leaders of the House should liaise with the leadership of the Senate to meet Mr Buhari on the matter.
The Speaker, Femi Gbajabiamila, did not allow debate on the matter, noting that point of privilege should not be debated.
He ruled that the House has noted the point of privilege raised.
One lawmaker that has a link with Mr Kanu is the Minority Leader of the Senate, Enyinnaya Abaribe.
The lawmaker was one of the three persons that stood surety for the bail granted the leader of IPOB by Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja in April 2017.
Mr Abaribe alongside the two others agreed to each stake N100 million worth of Abuja properties as security for the bail.
Mr Abaribe was reportedly detained in 2018 for the link to the IPOB leader, who was in exile after jumping bail following the invasion of his house by men of the Nigerian Army.
Mr Kanu is currently in the custody of the State Secret Service (SSS) after his extradition to Nigeria from an undisclosed country while Mr Adeyemo, also known as Sunday Igboho, is in detention in Benin Republic following his arrest in that country on his way to Germany.(Premium Times)