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Again, court arraigns Chimezie, three others over involvement in IPOB


Supporters of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) / AFP PHOTO / STEFAN HEUNIS

A federal High Court in Abuja has, again, arraigned Bright Chimezie, Chidiebere Onwidiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi over their alleged involvement in the movement for the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB).

Their re-arraignment on an amended three-count charge followed the severance of their trial from Nnamdi Kanu’s, whose whereabouts has been unknown since September last year, after his house was raided by the military.

Consequently, the charges, which were signed by the Principal State Counsel, Shuaibu Labaran, have been reduced from five to three.


Chimezie, Onwidiwe, Madubugwu, Nwawuisi and Kanu were accused of conspiring to broadcast on Radio Biafra monitored in Enugu and other areas within the jurisdiction of the court in 2014 and 2015, with a view to seceding from Nigeria.

The charge stated that they planned to severe the Southeast, South-South and parts of Kogi and Benue states from the Federal Republic of Nigeria to the Republic of Biafra, thereby committing an offence punishable under Section 516 of the Criminal Code Act, Cap C77 of 2004.

The defendants, however, pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Afterwards, the prosecution told the court that he was ready to call witnesses but asked for one-day adjournment to fully prepare with the witnesses.

But the defense counsels told Justice Binta Nyako that they were served with the charges only a day before and as such, required some time to prepare for trial.

Although the prosecution had blamed the late service on the fact that some of the counsels had no serving address, his position was objected, as the counsel reminded him that their addresses were with the court.

Chimezie’s counsel, Chukwudi Igwe, told the court that he has not had the opportunity to discuss with his client and therefore, pleaded that the court adjourn till Thursday to enable him visit his client for detailed discussion.

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