Court Strikes Out 8 of 15 Charges Against Kanu

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The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja, has fixed May 18 as the day to rule on the application for bail by the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.

Justice Binta Nyako, in her ruling, struck out counts 6,7,9,10,11,12,13 and 14 of the charge.  She, however, retained seven counts against him. Her ruling followed an application Kanu filed to quash the entire charges against him.  In the application which he filed through his team of lawyers led by Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN), he insisted that the charge against him was legally defective. He also argued that the court lacked the jurisdiction to try him on the strength of an incompetent charge.

However, FG’s lawyer, Mr. Shuaibu Labaran, prayed the court to strike out Kanu’s application and order the Prosecution to open up its defence. He argued that the application would touch the substance of the case that is yet to be heard.  He noted that, “the position as at now is that the IPOB is a proscribed organisation which was duly proscribed through the due process of law.”

He argued that Section 32 of the Terrorism Prevention Act imbued the court with the power to handle the trial. Based on that, he urged the court “to refuse the application to pave way for commencement of the trial in earnest.” But in her ruling, Justice Nyako held that the prosecution did not present sufficient materials before the court to sustain the eight count charges brought against Kanu.

With the current ruling of the court, Kanu will now be standing trial for a seven-count charge. They are, as follows: one, that he committed an offence punishable under Section 1(2)(b) of the Terrorism Prevention Amendment Act, 2013, by making a broadcast received and heard in Nigeria as a member and leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, a proscribed organisation, and committed an act in furtherance of an act of terrorism against the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the people of Nigeria.

READ ALSO: Jonathan Escaped Attempted Assassination – Nnamdi Kanu’s Disciple, Ekpa Claims

Two, that he issued a deadly threat to anyone who flouted his sit-at home order to write his/her Will,” with the intent to intimidate the population. As a result, banks, schools, markets, shopping malls, fuel stations domiciled in the Eastern States of Nigeria were not opened for businesses, citizens while vehicular movements were grounded and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 1(2)(b) of the Terrorism Prevention Amendment Act. 2013.

Three, that he, on diverse dates between 2018 and 2021, professed to be a member and leader of IPOB, a proscribed organisation and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 16 of the Terrorism Prevention Amendment Act. 2013.

Four, that he incited members of the public in Nigeria to hunt and kill Nigerian security personnel and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 1 (2) (h) of the Terrorism Prevention Amendment Act, 2013. Five, that he incited the same members of the public through broadcasts asking them to kill members of the families of Nigerian security personnel and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 1 (2) (h) of the Terrorism Prevention Amendment Act, 2013.

Six, that he directed members of IPOB to manufacture bombs and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 1 (2) (f) of the terrorism (Prevention) (Amendment) Act 2013. And, seven, that he imported and concealed a radio transmitter in a container and kept same in Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State, and which he used to make inciting broadcasts, and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 47 (2) (a) of Criminal Code Act. Cap, C45 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004’.”

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