Nnamdi Kanu (file photo)
By Valentine Amanze
Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has adjourned the trial of detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, to January 19, 2022.
The adjournment came after Kanu’s team of lawyers, staged a walk out over the refusal of operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS) to allow some of them including Kanu’s U.S. lawyer, Bruce Fein, access into the courtroom.
Kanu, who was brought into the courtroom around 9:52am, had after his case was called up, decried the refusal of security agents to allow some members of his legal team, especially his lawyer from the United States of America, Bruce Fein, to enter the courtroom.
The IPOB leader told the court that Mr. Fein, who he said was handling a case for him in the US, was around to witness his trial.
When asked by the judge, if he was ready to conduct the proceedings himself, in the absence of his lawyers, Kanu replied in the negative.
Meanwhile, counsel to Nigerian government, Mohamed Abubakar, who is the Director of Public Prosecution, urged the court to proceed with the trial in the absence of Kanu’s lawyers.
Security agents had barred some journalists from the courtroom.
Abubakar told the court that ordinarily, the matter was fixed for a hearing of an application that was filed by the defendant.
He argued that since Kanu’s lead counsel, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, who was initially inside the courtroom, walked out with his team before the arrival of the judge, his pending application should be deemed abandoned.
There was a heavy security presence at the court premises during the trial.
In a ruling, though Justice Nyako declined to dismiss the pending application and rather adjourned the case till January 19 and 20, 2022, for trial.