After a meeting yesterday with Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, the governor of Abia state, Okezie Ikpeazu,was asked by journalists to react to demands from some quarters that he should dethrone, Eze Kalu, the traditional ruler of Afarakwu community in Abia state. The monarch’s ‘offence’ is that he is the father of Nnamdi Kanu, who is the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).
Here is what the governor said in response:
“I clearly separate Kanu from his father. The processes of handling traditional institutions are enshrined in the laws of our land,” he said. “And traditional rulers who are members of our constituency have the leadership they will do the needful at the appropriate time. But for me, I think there is a clear division between Nnamdi Kanu and his father.”
Gov. Ikpeazu could have added that, “Nigeria is not North Korea.” And he would have been right.
North Korea practices “kin punishment” where political prisoners are sentenced to life imprisonment alongside two generations of their family as part of the “3 generations of punishment” policy instigated by the founder of that country, Kim Il-Sung.
North Korea is clearly not the kind of company Nigeria wants to keep.
Nigeria does not practice collective/kin punishment. In this country, individuals must be made to face their own punishments for crimes committed (where applicable) and family members cannot be vicariously held liable.