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Breaking News: Nigeria Supreme Court Fixes Date For Judgment On Self Determination

  OCTOBER 05 , 2023 | EASTERN PILOT Report By:  Fadehan Oyeyemi | The Supreme Court on Thursday fixed December 15 to deliver judgment in the...



Report By:  Fadehan Oyeyemi |

The Supreme Court on Thursday fixed December 15 to deliver judgment in the appeal filed by the Federal Government against the Court of Appeal judgment that quashed the criminal charges against the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, Nnamdi Kanu, and ordered his release. Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun fixed the judgment date after taking arguments from Kanu’s lawyer, Mike Ozekhome SAN, and Tijani Gazali SAN, who stood for the Federal Government.

The Federal Government, while presenting its case, pleaded that the judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja which upheld seven count charges against Kanu, be affirmed so that he can be brought for trial. However, while opposing, Ozekhome maintained that the Federal Government has since 2021 been detaining Kanu illegally and unlawfully.

He pleaded that the judgment of the Court of Appeal, which quashed the charges against Kanu and ordered his immediate release be upheld. The Court of Appeal, Abuja Division, had on October 13, 2022, in a judgment in an appeal filed and argued by Ozekhome, dismissed the remaining seven-count criminal charges brought against Kanu by the Federal Government at the Federal High Court in Abuja.

The high court had, in an earlier ruling, retained seven counts out of the original 15 counts against Kanu after striking out eight out of the 15-count charge. Justice Binta Nyako, while striking out eight charges, had held that Kanu had questions to answer on seven other counts. Then on October 13, 2022, The Court of Appeal in Abuja declared as illegal and unlawful, the abduction of the Biafra nation self determination agitation leader, Nnamdi Kanu from Kenya to Nigeria and quashed the entire terrorism charges brought against him by the Federal Government.

The Court held that the Federal Government breached all local and international laws in the forceful rendition of Kanu to Nigeria, thereby making the terrorism charges against him incompetent and unlawful. In a judgment in an appeal by Kanu, by Justice Oludotun Adefope-Okojie, the criminal charges by the Federal Government against Kanu were voided and set aside.

The Appellate Court said that the Federal Government having flagrantly breached the fundamental rights of Kanu, lost the legal right to put him on trial. The Court held that laws are meant to be obeyed and that the Federal Government has no reason to have taken laws into her own hand in the illegal and unlawful way the matter of Kanu was handled. Justice Adebola held that failure of Nigeria to follow due process by way of extradition process as prescribed by law was fatal to the charges against Kanu.

The Appeal Court further held that the failure of the Federal Government to disclose where and when the alleged offences brought against Kanu were committed was also fatal to the terrorism charges and made them liable to dismissal. “By engaging in utter unlawful and illegal acts and in breach of its own laws in the instant matter, the Federal Government did not come to equity in clean hands and must be called to order. “With appalling disregard to local and international laws, the Federal Government has lost the right to put the appellant on trial for any offence.

“Treaties and Protocols are meant to be obeyed. No government in the world is permitted to abduct anybody without following due process of extradition. Nigeria is not an exception or excused. Nigeria must obey her own law and that of international, so as to avoid anarchy”, the Court held.


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