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Counsel prays for accelerated hearing in Kanu’s suits

By Gordi Udeajah, Umuahia 
23 November 2021   |   2:58 am
Special Counsel for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Aloy Ejimakor, has called for accelerated hearing and disposal of the suit filed by Kanu

[files] Men of the Nigeria police force are seen outside the Federal High Court, during the trial of leader of the Proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, who is facing a 7-count amended charge on alleged treasonable felony and terrorism at the Federal High Court in Abuja, Nigeria, on October 21, 2021. – A high-profile case against a Nigerian separatist accused of terrorism and treason was adjourned on October 21, 2021, lawyers said, after a court appearance under heavy security in the capital Abuja.<br />Nnamdi Kanu, 53, leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) group, which wants a separate state for the ethnic Igbo people in the southeast, was arrested abroad in June and brought back to Nigeria to face trial. (Photo by Kola Sulaimon / AFP)

Special Counsel for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Aloy Ejimakor, has called for accelerated hearing and disposal of the suit filed by Kanu at the Abia State High Court as well as the one he is being prosecuted by the Federal Government at the Federal High Court, Abuja.

The suit in Abia, which was filed by Ejimakor is against the Federal Government, its attorney general and six others.

It is on Kanu’s fundamental rights violation, illegal detention and extradition from Kenya to Nigeria.

He stated that fundamental right suits are special class cases that must be concluded on time, especially as Kanu has been in detention since June this year. 

When the matter came up on Friday at Umuahia before Hon Justice Benson Anya, was adjourned to December 10, 2021, for the adoption of the court processes and hearing of the substantive application seeking Kanu’s release from detention and his repatriation to Britain.

In the Abuja suit, Kanu has been in detention at the DSS facility in Abuja for many months and facing multiple charges filed by the Federal Government before Justice Binta Murtala Nyako of the Federal High Court, Abuja.

When the matter came up for hearing on that date, it was further adjourned to January 19, 2022.

On the legal implication of releasing Kanu without hosting due court process, Ejimakor argued that Section 174 of the 1999 Nigeria Constitution provide for doing so if the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) invokes and applies his statutory power.

According to him, the AGF has the constitutional power to discontinue any criminal proceedings instituted by him or any other authority or person at any stage before the judgment is delivered.  He asserted that the unconditional release of Kanu lies with the Executive and not the Judiciary.

“Section 174 of the Constitution provide that the AGF shall have the power to institute and undertake criminal proceedings before any court of law in Nigeria other than a court-martial, in respect of any offence created by or under any Act of the National Assembly.

“The AGF also has the power to take over and continue any such criminal proceedings that may have been instituted by any other authority or person and to discontinue at any stage before judgment is delivered, any such criminal proceedings instituted or undertaken by him or any other authority or person.”