Aloy Ejimakor, the counsel for the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, has asked IPOB members and other supporters of the separatist to attend the agitator’s trial in Abuja on Monday.
He said this in a press statement titled, ‘Security agents must not molest those coming to show solidarity with Kanu’, on Sunday.
He explained that the statement was necessitated by reports that those coming to Abuja to show solidarity with Kanu will be harassed or even arrested by security agents.
Biafran separatist leader Kanu was arrested and brought back to Nigeria after four years on the run.
Kanu heads the outlawed Indigenous People of Biafra, which agitates for a separate Biafran state for ethnic Igbos in South-East Nigeria.
While Nigerian authorities have not explained how he was arrested, his wife said he was snatched during a business trip to Kenya.
Kanu’s trial for “terrorism” has been set for Monday, July 26.
The statement read, “Let me make it clear that while I am not calling on people or Kanu’s supporters to throng Abuja for the hearing on Monday, it’s important to state that anybody who wishes to come is not doing anything illegal, provided such a person comes in peace.
“Kanu’s trial is an open trial, not a secret trial and he’s presumed innocent until proven guilty. Therefore, anybody wishing to be associated with his trial by being present in Abuja is protected by his Constitutional right to freedom of association and movement.
“So, my message to all supporters of Kanu and even to Nigerian government is simple and that is: Everybody should be strictly guided by the rule of law pertinent to why Nnamdi Kanu is facing these tribulations and trials.
“That pertinent rule of law is clearly codified by CAP A9, Laws of Federation of Nigeria, where it is stated at Article 20 that:
“All peoples shall have the right to existence. They shall have the unquestionable and inalienable right to self-determination. They shall freely determine their political status and shall pursue their economic and social development according to the policy they have freely chosen.
“Above is the fulcrum of every other crime the Nigerian government is alleging against Kanu. Therefore, once government recognizes that the enterprise upon which Kanu is engaged is expressly recognized or protected by laws, it will see that dialogue, not trials and violence, is the only legal pathway to containing it.
“I am saying this because the same Law that legalizes self-determination also requires the government to accommodate it. Article 1 of that Law provides that Nigeria “shall recognise the rights, duties and freedoms enshrined in the Charter and shall undertake to adopt legislative or other measures to give effect to them”.
“Further, subjecting Kanu to any trial under the circumstances of his extraordinary rendition will face lots of legal challenges. So, what is expected on Monday is not a trial but what Lawyers call ‘taking a plea’ or a re-arraignment on the amended Charges that might be brought.
“Should that happen, the procedure permits taking an adjournment to study the new Charges for the purpose of advising the defendant on the next steps.
“So, there’s nothing significant that will happen on Monday that warrants anybody, including the government, to be jittery.
High security alert as IPOB leader, Kanu’s trial resumes Monday
Barring any unforeseen hindrance, the trial of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Nnamdi Kanu will resume on Monday before a Federal High Court in Abuja.
Kanu is being tried by the Federal Government on a charge of treasonable felony.
Although he was granted bail on health grounds, Kanu jumped bail and was re-arrested last month by security agents overseas.
Following his re-arrest and production in court by the state on June 29, Justice Binta Nyako acceded to the prosecution’s request that Kanu be remanded in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS).
Justice Nyako equally granted an accelerated hearing in the case and rescheduled the trial earlier fixed for October 20 to July 26 and 27.
As the close of work on Friday, the court’s management was said to be working closely with relevant security agencies to avert possible security breach in view of the large turnout of IPOB followers and other spectators often witnessed when the case comes up.
The Nation learnt part of the security measures being put in place was to restrict human movement in and around the court premises on Monday, including the number of journalists to be allowed to witness proceedings.
Some security operatives, including armed policemen, were sighted around the courthouse on Sunday evening
DSS Accredits Daily Post, Nine Others For Coverage Of Nnamdi Kanu’s Trial – Politics – Nairaland
The Department of State Service (DSS) has accredited DAILY POST and nine others for the July 26 coverage of the trial of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biiafra, IPOB, in the terrorism and treasonable felony charges brought against him by the Federal Government.
The DSS is spearheading the trial on behalf of the Federal Government and is expected to provide adequate security at the venue of the trial.
Kanu, who was re-arrested in far away Kenya, during a coordinated interception will be put on trial on Monday July 26 at the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Others accredited along with DAILY POST for the trial coverage are Premium Times, Thisday, The Nation, The Herald and Daily Independent newspapers while the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) is leading the broadcast side.
Other broadcast media are the Channels Television, Africa Independent Television, AIT, and Television Continental, TVC.
The restriction of media houses into the courtroom was part of the security measures put in place by the management of the Federal High Court in Abuja and DSS to control crowds at the court premises.
Sources confided in our correspondent that adequate security measures have been put in place by various security agencies to ward off possible breakdown of order or unruly behavior from any quarter during the trial.
Security operatives, apparently learning from past experiences, have resolved to block all roads leading to the court to prevent vehicular movement while thorough checking of staff of the court and visitors will be undertaken.
Justice Binta Nyako is expected to preside over the trial while a senior lawyer from the Federal Ministry of Justice, Mr Shuaib Labaran, will lead the prosecution team for the government.
ANG gathered that about 10 Senior Advocates of Nigeria (SANs) have been assembled by family members and well wishers of Kanu to provide adequate defence for the accused secession agitator.
It will be recalled that after over two years of manhunt, the Federal Government rearrested the Biafran leader in Kenya and was immediately brought to Nigeria for continuation of his trial.
The Attorney General of the Federation AGF and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami SAN, had on Tuesday June 29 at an emergency media briefing in his office in Abuja announced the re- arrest of Kanu.
Nnamdi Kanu, who was earlier put on trial on charges bothering on terrorism, treasonable felony and sponsorship of unlawful organization had jumped bail granted him by the federal high court and escaped from Nigeria shortly after the bail was perfected for him by Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe who volunteered to stand surety for him.
Justice Binta Nyako who granted him bail on the ground of his Ill health, had revoked the bail on March 28 , 2019 and issued a bench warrant for his arrest in any part of Nigeria.