"No plan to transfer Boko Haram detainees to Onitsha Prison" - APC

The leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC), south-east zone on Sunday dismissed as false and mischievous insinuations in some quarters that the Federal Government had concluded arrangements to transfer some Boko Haram detainees to Onitsha prison in Anambra state.

In a press statement entitled: "Transfer of Boko Haram Detainees to Anambra State: Blatant Falsehood !" and signed by the party's spokesman in the zone, Osita Okechukwu, the APC said it has made ghe necessary contacts with both the presidency and the Nigeria Prison Service (NPS) as well as the Ministry of Internal Affairs and discovered that the rumour was 'a blatant falsehood'.
Okechukwu explained: "In the clarification, the Nigeria Prison Service stated unequivocally : 'Most of the terror suspects are awaiting trial and so there is no way they can be moved to another state, because they must be tried in the state where they committed the crime.'

"They went further to state that their primary and traditional duty is to move detainees from prison to trial courts and wondered how easy it is to move the detainees more than 1000 kilometres from Onitsha to Maiduguri if they are relocated?" Accordingly, the South East zone of the APC therefore appealed to "our dear compatriots to disregard the blackmail and sinister rumour of rear-guard elements; who are yet to recover from their failure in the March 28th presidential election.”
Commercial activities were paralysed on Saturday in Anambra State following protests by traders across the state.

The traders, who closed their shops as early as 9am in major cities of Onitsha, Awka, Nnewi, Ekwulobia and Agulu, took to the streets protesting what they termed plan by the Federal Government to transfer Boko Haram detainees to prisons in the state.

Traders and other residents blocked the Enugu – Onitsha Expressway chanting songs suggesting they would be forced to revive the clamour for Biafran Republic if pushed to the wall.

The traders carried placards bearing inscriptions like ‘Buhari should not destroy the peace in Anambra State,’ ‘Biafra kanyi choro’ (We want Biafra), ‘Buhari, Igbos cannot accept your prisoners, ‘We do not want Boko Haram in Anambra,’ ‘Federal Government, why extend Boko Haram to Anambra?’ and ‘Boko Haram prisoners are not allowed here.’
Credit: Christopher Isiguzo/ThisDay