Simon Ekpa declared wanted… here’s what to know about him

 Simon Ekpa declared wanted… here’s what to know about him

The Defence Headquarters (DHQ) in Abuja has issued a wanted declaration for Simon Ekpa, a factional leader of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB), along with 96 others across the nation. 

The DHQ cited charges of terrorism, violent extremism, and secessionist activities against the country. Notably, Ekpa, known for spearheading the Monday sit-at-home protests in the South-East, features prominently on the list. Major General Edward Buba, Director of Defence Media Operations, verified the identities of the wanted individuals. 

The suspects span various zones, including the North East, North West, North Central, and South-East, with 43 wanted in the North West for banditry-related crimes. In the North East, 33 individuals, including known terrorist commanders, are sought. 

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Additionally, 21 insurgents and violent criminals from the North-Central and South-East, including Ekpa, Chika Edoziem, and others, are also wanted. 

Ekpa, previously arrested in Finland for election disruption threats in the South-East, has maintained an active presence on social media since his release.

Who is Simon Ekpa:

Simon Ekpa, was born on March 21, 1985, he hails from the Ohaukwu local government area of Ebonyi State, Nigeria. 

Initially gaining recognition as a Nigerian athlete, he clinched a notable silver medal in the 100 meters at the 2003 African Junior Athletics Championships in Cameroon.

However, Ekpa’s pursuits extended beyond athletics. In 2007, he made the pivotal decision to relocate to Lahti, Finland, where he immersed himself in the Finnish way of life. Over the years, he embraced the Finnish language, fulfilled his military service, and established his roots by starting a family.

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His involvement in Finnish politics underscores his commitment to civic engagement. Affiliating himself with the National Coalition Party of Finland, he contested in the 2022 Finnish county elections and subsequently secured a position as a city councillor in Lahti, a role he continues to hold.

Following the completion of his high school education, he pursued a Master’s degree in Law at Aberystwyth University, further enhancing his expertise through additional studies at Canyon College.

In 2023, Ekpa started founding the Biafra Republic Government in Exile (BRGIE) organization. As its leader, he advocates for the independence of Biafra, a region in West Africa that sought autonomy from Nigeria and existed as a partially recognized state from 1967 to 1970.

His commitment to his cause remains unwavering, demonstrated not only through his leadership but also by his continued service as a reservist in the Finnish Army, having served at the Häme Regiment in Hennala in 2013. 

Here are 5 things to know about the arrested pro-Biafra agitator, Simon Ekpa:

  • Simon Ekpa is a Nigerian-Finnish lawyer, political activist, and former athlete.
  • In 2003, Ekpa achieved sporting success by winning a silver medal for Nigeria in the 100 meters at the African Junior Athletics Championships held in Cameroon.
  • Ekpa has resided in Lahti, Finland, since 2007. He is associated with the National Coalition Party of Finland and contested as a candidate in the 2022 Finnish county elections.
  • Ekpa gained prominence as the lead broadcaster for Radio Biafra following the arrest of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu. However, he was later relieved of his duties due to alleged breaches of the organization’s rules.

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  • Ekpa has been accused of allegedly inciting violence in South-Eastern Nigeria through his broadcasts and advocacy of sit-at-home orders as part of the separatist movement in the region.

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