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Court denies Nnamdi Kanu bail

By Editor   |   01 December 2016   |   2:53 pm

A Federal High Court on Thursday refused bail to the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), whose arrest last year sparked a wave of bloody protests across the country.

Nnamdi Kanu group's has emerged as the new face of the campaign by the Igbo people of southeast Nigeria for a separate Biafra state.

He has been in custody since his arrest in October 2015, facing charges of treason, operating pirate Radio Biafra and belonging to an unlawful organisation.


Federal high court judge Binta Nyako refused an application by Kanu's lawyers to release him and three others, ruling that the "alleged offences for which the defendants are standing trial are serious."

Nyako said Kanu and the other suspects could face up to life in prison if convicted.

In refusing bail, Nyako also ordered the case heard "almost immediately but not later than two months from now." Kanu's lawyer Ifeanyi Ejiofor told AFP he would appeal.

"We are surprised at the ruling of the court but we still have the right of appeal," he said.

The court is now adjourned until December 13 to consider a prosecution request for the trial to be conducted behind closed doors to protect witnesses.

Dozens of pro-Biafra campaigners stood outside the court chanting slogans such as "All hail Biafra" and "All we want is freedom."

After the hearing, Kanu and the other suspects, all dressed in white, were whisked away by security officials.

At least three judges, including in an ECOWAS court, have ordered Kanu's release, but the Nigerian government refused to free him, saying he would jump bail. Kanu's separatist IPOB group has held a series of protests across the country in recent months, sparking bloody clashes with the security forces.

Last week, Amnesty International accused security agents of killing some 150 Biafra protesters in the past year, but the military denied the charge.

Kanu is pushing for a separate republic of Biafra, nearly 50 years after a previous declaration of independence sparked a civil war.

The 1967-70 conflict left more than a million people dead, most of them from starvation and disease, as the Igbo nation was blockaded into submission.


In this article:
BiafraNnamdi Kanu


  • 100%Iboguy

    “has emerged as the new face of the campaign by the Igbo people of southeast Nigeria for a separate Biafra state”

    The author of the news report forgot to identify the Igbo people whom kanu is the face of. At the last count the Igbo people in Nigeria have through the electoral process endorsed the people they believe represent their hopes and aspirations. I can not remember seeing the Igbo people nominating kanu as a custodian of their wish except if the nomination was done in the Guardian editorial room.

    • Dr Real

      Exactly! Friend, you’re damn right! Facts are not truths and in this case, it’s neither fact nor truth. I wonder when the Igbos I know nominated, elected, selected or by whatever means or nomenclature Nnamdi Kanu at their fore.

  • John Okolie

    Life, is never a bed of roses for a workman whose raw material is the truth. Whether you people jail or kill Kanu, the truth stands and is well established. Kanu doesn’t need to be nominated by the Igbos to be able to speak for them or to speak the truth and stand by his convictions, in that, I am more than happy to have him as my representative. Leaders emerge among us based on their contributions to the progress of our people economically, spiritually or socially, it has never been a choice based on selection but on ability and in this, he has shown himself to be more than capable.

    Anybody who is in doubt as to his acceptance in Igboland should conduct a referendum on Kanu and any other Igbo leader and watch the kind of drubbing those others would receive. A prophet is without honor even in his hometown, this prophet is not only with honor, but is beloved.
    Killing Kanu or keeping him in prison will not prevent the inevitable. The commencement of the stupidly named “operation python dance” was in anticipation of this decision which should tell the most ignorant observer that Buhari has no intentions of letting Kanu out of prison. It will neither help him rule Nigeria nor teach him the rudimentary skills needed to be a president in the twenty first century.

    • 100%Iboguy

      You are free to conduct your referendum any time you like but the Nigeria government will always give any Nigeria an equal opportunity to test his or her popularity through the normal and laid down process of election at intervals.

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