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IPOB Threatens: Release Kanu by August 8 or we Lockdown the Entire Southeast

IPOB Threatens: Release Kanu
IPOB Threatens: Release Kanu

By Uche Amunike

The Indigenous People of Biafra has made demands of the Buhari-led government of Nigeria, to release its leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu on or before Sunday August 8 2021 or face the consequence of having the entire Southeast geo-political zone under total lockdown as from August 9 2021 if they failed to do so.
The group stated that self determination has never been found in any country’s constitution to be a crime.
They made this clear in a statement released by the IPOB Head, Directorate of State, Chika Edoziem, Wednesday.
Mazi Kanu was arrested about a month ago in Kenya and extradited to Nigeria where he was made to appear before Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court, Abuja for charges which include treasonable felony among others.
The secessionist group, IPOB has appealed to governors and leaders of the Southeast and every other individual or group who have their hands in the abduction, re-arrest and extradition of Kanu from Kenya to pray that nothing bad happened to their leader in detention, saying that all hell will let loose if anything happened to Kanu.
Parts of the statement read thus: ‘The Directorate of State of the Indigenous People of Biafra is very much aware of the strategy of the government of Nigeria to subject the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra worldwide, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, to media trial and to convict him in the public before giving him that public conviction, an official stamp of the compromised Nigerian judicial system.’
‘The global community knows that self determination is not a crime; the Nigerian government knows equally that self determination does not in any way constitute any known offence stipulated in their constitution and therefore do not have any case against the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra.’
‘In recognition of the above facts and truths, the Directorate of State of the Indigenous People of Biafra demands herewith, an unconditional and immediate release of our leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, on or before August 8, 2021, failing which we shall commence a weekly lock down of Biafraland, starting on Monday, August 9, 2021.’
Recall that on July 29, the Federal High Court released a document listing the number of Media houses that were to cover the IPOB leader’s trial to 10.
Nigerians have been sceptical about this limitation and also the fact that Kanu was not in court on the day of his trial.
The very act of the court keeping Kanu’s trial out of public view was unaccepted by Nigerians.
Richard Akinola, an activist, has however looked at some constitutional provisions which a court can latch on, in the Kanu’s typical circumstance.
‘Section 36(1) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended): ‘In the determination of his civil rights and obligations, including any question or determination by or against any government or authority, a person shall be entitled to a fair hearing within a reasonable time by a court or other tribunal established by law and constituted in such manner as to secure its independence and impartiality.’
‘The proceedings of a court or the proceedings of any tribunal to the matters mentioned in subsection (1) of this section including the announcement of the decisions of the court or tribunal shall be held in public.’
‘Then, sub-section (4)(a) reads: 4) Whenever any person is charged with a criminal offence, he shall, unless the charge is withdrawn, be entitled to a fair hearing in public within a reasonable time by a court or tribunal Provided that –(a) a court or such a tribunal may exclude from its proceedings persons other than the parties thereto or their legal practitioners in the interest of defense, public safety, public order, public morality, the welfare of persons who have not attained the age of eighteen years, the protection of the private lives of the parties or to such extent as it may consider necessary by reason of special circumstances in which publicity would be contrary to the interests of justice.’
‘While l don’t see any big deal or major security implications in the Kanu trial, which has been hyped by the authorities, the fact that he faces treasonable felony charges may make the authorities hide under this provision to prevent full media trial. This, of course, has its own downside because it goes to the credibility of the trial’, he said.
Justice has no place in darkness and secrecy. When a Judge sits on a case, he himself is on trial. If there is any misconduct on his part and bias or prejudice, there is a reporter to keep an eye on him’, he concluded.


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