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Court quashes eight terrorism charges against IPOB leader

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By Enekorogha Godbless

There was sigh of relief as High Court of the federation Abuja quashed eight of the 15 terrorism and punishable charges made by the Federal Government against the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.

On Friday at the High Court Abuja, Justice Binta Nyako had freed the leader of IPOB Nnamdi Kanu from eight of the 15 charges leveled against him by the federal government.

According to the Justice of the federation Abuja, “In this instant preliminary objection application, I have read the counts and come to the conclusion that counts six, seven, eight, nine, 10, 11, 12 and 14 have not disclosed any offence against the defendant.

“‘Counts one, two, three, four, five, eight and 15 show some allegations, which the defendant has to answer.

“The court shall proceed to try the defendant on those counts,” Justice Nyako said.

Justice Nyako of the high court of the federation Abuja, asserted on Friday that counts six, seven, nine, 10, 11, 12 13 and 14 should be eliminated immediately.

The judge also discarded the statement made by Chief Mike Ozekhome, SAN, counsel for Kanu, that if Nnamdi Kanu or IPOB was a terrorist group under the Nigerian law or not was still a subject of the appeal.

Ozekhome the IPOB lawyer asserted that his client Nnamdi Kanu ought to be bailed.

He therefore argued that, the leader of IPOB Nnamdi Kanu had never scorn any of the bail conditions, but Nnamdi Kanu had to escape death in his resident during an attack

Ozekhome stated, “until a person is tried and convicted, he should be allowed to walk free.”

He maintained that his client is innocent of the counts labeled against him.

The legal luminary averred, “I humbly urge my lord to use your discretion to grant him bail subject to my lord’s condition,” he said.

Shuaibu Labaran lawyer to the AGF, agitated against Ozekhome, stating that the leader of the IPOB has disregarded all the bail conditions.

According to Shuaibu Labaran “My lord granted him bail in 2017 on health grounds, but since then to date, no medical record was submitted to the court until he jumped bail.

“What we should be saying is contempt of court because he has flagrantly violated the orders of the court,”

He said the judge should follow her discretion vis-a-vis the circumstances of the case.

The lawyer said in the alternative, that Nyako should make an order for an accelerated hearing on the matter so that Kanu could “know his fate one way or the order”.

The Justice of the high court of the federation adjourned the matter until May 18 and May 26.

It was gathered from newsmen immediately after the proceeding, where Shuaibu Labaran said that the high court Abuja agreed with the Federal Government on arguments about rendition.

“On the issue of rendition, the court bluntly said that rendition, in this situation, is allowed because rendition in a criminal case is allowed.

“After all, the defendant is under a bench warrant and anywhere he is seeing, the law allows it to be forcefully brought to court,”

He also said that, “abduction and rendition to Nigeria without extradition proceedings or hearing in Kenya is a clear violation of Article 12(4) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act CAP A9, LFN 2004.”

“violates Article/part 5 (a) of the African Charter’s Principles and Guidelines on Human and Peoples’ Rights.”