By Chimaobi Nwaiwu, Nnewi.
The Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, United Kingdom branch has faulted the reasons given by Hon. Justice John Tsoho of the Abuja Federal High Court Abuja for not granting the bail application of leader of IPOB and Director of Radio Biafra, Mr. Nnamdi Kanu.
In a statement signed by the spokespersons for IPOB in United Kingdom Mr. Emma Nmezu, a lawyer, and Dr. Clifford Chukwuemeka Iroanya IPOB said the Honourable Justice Tsoho premised his judgment for not granting bail to Mr. Kanu on three reasons.
“The reasons according to him are, that Mazi Kanu was a threat to national security, secondly, that if released might commit the same offence again and thirdly, that there was a probability that Nnamdi Kanu might jump bail because he possessed dual citizenship.
“While the first and the third reasons are very clear, but unsustainable statements, we are at loss with the second reason and do not know exactly what the Hon. Justice meant by “might commit the same offense again”
“To the best of our knowledge, Mazi Kanu has not even been tried in the court not to talk of being convicted, therefore, we do not understand the offence he was found guilty of committing and for which he will likely commit again if released, according to Hon. Justice Tsoho.
“Is it a possibility that the Hon. Justice Tsoho misspoke or that he never actually uttered this travesty of a statement. On the first reason adduced, we are yet to get detailed information on what the Judge meant by “threat to National Security” because we know that Mazi Kanu is not associated with Boko Haram or any terrorist organization. Again we are pushed to believe that Hon. Justice Tsoho misspoke,” said IPOB.
“We are however shocked on the third reason, to hear that a denial of bail will be based on the accused person’s dual citizenship, even though the Honourable Judge did not mention the other country to which Nnamdi Kanu is a citizen, we know he was referring to Britain.
“But we also know that there is extradition agreement between Nigeria and Britain and extraditing Mazi Kanu to Nigeria, should he flee to Britain will not be a problem for the Nigerian government,therefore, we conclude that the judgment of Hon. Justice Tsoho is inappropriate, biased, wrong, and must be overturned by an Appeal Court Judge.
Similarly, the IPOB Media and Publicity Officer Mr. Emma Powerful has faulted the denial of bail to Mr. Kanu, describing it as a systematic denial of the entire South Eastern Nigeria of their right.
He said that every day the present administration of All Progressives Congress, APC, and their leader President Muhammadu Buhari keeps exposing itself to the world that it has no respect for the rule of law and orders of competent court of law.
He wondered why in a country like Nigeria, people will not be allowed to engage in peaceful demonstrations and protests, wondering whether it will be better for them to engage in violent demonstrations and protests and carrying guns and throwing bombs like the Boko Haram insurgents.
“We are being pushed to the walls, our members who were engaged in peaceful protest in Aba, Abia state and Port Harcourt Rivers State were shot by the Army and taken to Militaryn barracks in Afikpo Ebonyi state and Bori camp in rivers State with bullet wounds.
“The victims are undergoing torture and other inhuman treatments, as they bring them out every morning, torture and engage them in all manners of hard labours and ask them about their missing guns as if IPOB members carry guns.
“We do not carry guns and do not intent to carry in the nearest future, we are therefore calling on Amnesty International, all human rights organizations and the international community to prevail on the Nigerian government respect the rule of law and the orders of the courts, as at the last count our members arrested in Aba are 25 while those in Port Harcourt are 18 in number, totaling 43 people detained in the two Army barracks in Ebonyi and rivers States respectively” he said.