IPOB: Kanu Still Awaiting His Release, Ejiofor, Says”Appeal Court Order Is Sacrosanct And Must Be Respected By FG”

By Lateef Adegbite

The National Security Council, NSC, under the Chairmanship of President Muhammadu Buhari, appears to have rubber stamped what Abubakar Malami, a Senior of Nigeria, SAN and Attorney General of the Federation, AGF, and minister of Justice, had said about the Appeal Court, in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Judgment on Nnamdi Kanu, Leader of the proscribed Indigenous people of Biafra, IPOB, A Separatist group, based I the south east geopolitical region.

Malami had said that the Appeal Court judgment did not acquit the IPOB Leader, but only discharged him, meaning that he will still remain in Department of State service, DSS, Custody until he is discharged and aquitted. Not many were surprised when the minister dropped the bombshell. This is because they knew he was speaking the mind of the Katsina born Nigeria President, who is the Commander-In –Chief of the Nigerian Armed Forces and Chairman, National Security Council, NSC, which has the heads of all the security agencies as members.

Malami: AGF And Minister Of Justice

Mohammed Dingyadi, minister of Police Affairs, who is a member of the Council, after its recent meeting on Friday, October 14, 2022, had reconfirmed what Malami, the Kebbi state born AGF and minister of Justice had said in his initial apparent reaction to the Appeal Court judgment,‘discharging Kanu, noting that he was  not acquitted, meaning that there was no basis for him to celebrate of  his freedom yet as his trial is still ongoing.

  Note that other members of the NSC, who were at the top level security meeting include  retired Major Generals  Babagana Mnguno, National Security Adviser, NSC, Bashir Magashi, minister of Defense, General Lucky Irabor, Chief of Defense Staff, CDS, Lt. General. Farouk Yahaya, Chief of Army Staff, CoAS, Air Marshall Olanyika Adebayo Amao, Chief of Air Staff, CAS  and  Vice Admiral Awwal Zubairu Gambo, Chief of Naval Staff, CNS.

Also at the top level security chaired by the  Nigerian President, were Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, a former governor of Osun state and minister of Internal Affairs,   Usman Alkali Baba, Inspector General of Police, IGP, Yusuf Bichi, Director General,  Department of State Service, DSS, and Ahmed Rufai Abubakar, Director General, National Intelligence Agency, NIA.

 Samuel Adebayo, an Army Major General and the Chief of Defense Staff, was at the NSC, meeting on October 14, 2022 as well, showing the importance of the meeting.      

Although, the Police Affairs minister, had made Nigerians to believe that discussion at the NSC meeting was centralized on the Appeal Court‘s Judgment on Kanu, and not on political solution to the IPOB, Leader’s release.  He had said that ‘’the Council is considering an appropriate action to take on the matter and would notify Nigerians of its position in due course’’.

 Indeed, what the Police Affairs minister had said after the recent NSC meeting in Abuja, reconfirms what is contained in the AGF and minister of Justice Statement that ‘’the government will take   appropriate  legal  options  before the Authorities are exploited  and communicate accordingly to the public’’, an indications that the minister  may have briefed the Appeal Court Judgment  discharging Kanu with the President, which may have formed the kernel of discussion of the NSC, last Friday

Barrister Ejiofor: Battles Malami , AGF And Minister Of Justice, For Kanu’s Release

Worried that Kanu , the IPOB, Leader who has been in the bad book of the Buhari led All Progressive Government, will not get justice   may have informed  why Ifeanyi Ejiofor, Lawyer to the self –acclaimed Leader of  the IPOB,  had insisted that the government must ‘’respect   the judgment of the Court of Appeal  regarding  the release of his client’’.

The IPOB Leader’s had admitted that the government can appeal against the Appeal Court Judgment to the Supreme Court, but for now,’’it must not stop immediate compliance with the order of the Court of Appeal which had directed for the immediate and unconditional release of Kanu’’.Ejiofor may have unbarred his mind in a Statement when he said ‘’the order made by the Learned Justices of the Court of Appeal, ‘’is sacrosanct and must be obeyed immediately without much ado’’.

Kanu: Discharged By Appeal Court But Stil In DSS, Custody

In discharging Kanu, from the DSS custody and trial, the three-man Panel of the  Appeal Court had said that the Federal High Court  currently trying the IPOB Leader, ‘’lacks  the jurisdictions  to do so in view of the abduction  and extraordinary  rendition  to the Nigerian government  in fragrant violation  of the African Union, AU, convention  and protocol of extradition’’.

 The Appeal Court Learned Justices, in the ruling  had stated that  ‘’the 15 count charge   preferred against the IPOB Leader ‘’did not disclose  the place, date, time  and nature of  the alleged offences committed before being unlawfully  extradited  to Nigeria in clear violation of his international treaties’’.

More so, the Appeal Court Justices,   noted that ‘’the government failed to disclose where the IPOB Leader was arrested, despite the grave allegations against him’’. The three-man Appeal Court Justices were emphatic:  that ‘’the act of abduction and extraordinary rendition of Kanu from Kenya without due process was a violation his Fundamental Human Rights’’.

Recall that Malami, theA GF and minister of Justice,   had made reference   to the charge pending against Kanu before he left Nigeria in 2017 an indications that the Federal government may continue with the charges in the IPOB Leader trial.

But Ejiofor, Kanu’s Lawyer had said that there was no basis for the trial Court to make reference to the preferred charge against his client because   the Appeal Court had struck out eight of the charges, remaining seven. According to him, the prosecution has amended the charge against Kanu about seven times., noting that ‘’It is the same charge that have been amended to include other counts that have been brought againsts him bring it to seven and then to 15There are speculations making the rounds that Buhari may want to adopt a political solution to solve the embattled Kanu’s matter  in order  to win the heart of the Ohaneze Ndigbo, and the entire south east  geopolitical region  votes for  Aswaju  Ahmed Bola Tinubu,  a former governor of Lagos  state and the Party Flag bearer for the 2023, Presidential elections.

.Nigerians are watching to see how the Kanu’s trial would end, whether it would end in Court  or the President using his political powers to release him.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *