Nnamdi Kanu (file photo)
IPOB leader objects to fresh charges
Court on Tuesday January 18, 2022 adjourned the trial of the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, after he objected to the fresh charges brought against him by the Nigerian government.
The Federal Government had filed fresh terrorism charges against the detained IPOB leader before the Federal High Court on Monday.
Consequently, the initial seven counts bordering on treasonable felony and terrorism, against him, increased to 15.
But during his trial which held amidst heavy security presence, Kanu objected to the fresh charges.
The court is now expected to reconvene on Wednesday for him to take his plea.
Besides, one of the Lead counsels for the IPOB Leader, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, had announced that Human Rights Lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), will now lead the delegation of lawyers representing Kanu.
Addressing journalists after the proceedings Ozekhome said: “I have consulted with my client with regards to the 15-count charge. Some of the statements made by him that were not clear, which I pointed out to the court, the prosecution has been able to give me a copy that is more legible.
“With that, we will take the next step. No one is running from a plea being taken. But the point we made today, which the court appreciated is that you can’t take plea to counts that have not been given to you.
“We were served some minutes to 10:00am yesterday – a 15-count amended charge for a case coming up today, whereas, the last date of adjournment was 2nd of December so, they had well-over one month to do that but they didn’t.
“I believe that was intended to frustrate today’s proceedings. In any event, that was the 6th time they are amending the charge. Each time they amend, I file a preliminary objection, they go back to the drawing board to re-amend”.
Meanwhile, pro and anti-Nnamdi Kanu protesters have hit the streets of Abuja.
While the anti- Kanu protesters are accusing the IPOP leader of treason and calling for a speedy trial, the pro-Kanu group insists it is within the rights of IPOP to demand independence from the Nigerian state.