Ifeanyi Ejiofor, lead counsel for the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, has revealed why the Department of State Services (DSS) must bring his client to court for his trial tomorrow.
In a press briefing ahead of Nnamdi Kanu’s trial on Thursday, October 21, Ifeanyi Ejiofor said the DSS must produce the IPOB leader in court because many people in the South-East don’t believe that his client is still alive.
Ejiofor noted that the current tension and regular Monday sit-at-home being observed in the South-East was because the DSS failed to bring Kanu to court on July 26.
The lawyer added that he and his team would not condone any form of harassment, molestation or threat by the security operatives against Kanu’s supporters.
He charged IPOB members to act within the confines of the law, adding that anything short of fair hearing and physical appearance of Kanu would aggravate the current agitations.
Ifeanyi Ejiofor Speaks Ahead Of Nnamdi Kanu’s Trial
He said, “As the world is now aware, tomorrow, being the 21st day of October, 2021, is the date on record, collectively agreed in open Court by all parties for the commencement of hearing in our Client’s case, we therefore, demand as follows;
1. That tomorrow, being the 21st day of October, 2021 should be sacrosanct. Our Client – Onyendu Mazi Nnamdi Kanu MUST and SHALL be produced in Court to face his trial. Thankfully, the Learned Director of Public Prosecution of the Federation, has though belatedly filed a 7-Count Amended Charge, along with an affidavit of completion of investigation, so there is no excuse or place to hide whatsoever again to justify doing the contrary.
2. That Security Agents ostensibly to be deployed to man the Court and its environs, or detailed to provide security on this 21st day of October, 2021, should be manifestly civil in their conduct towards the civilian populace who are expected to throng the Court in their numbers in solidarity.
It is on record today, that over 20 persons all of Ebonyi state indigenes/extraction, including a Lawyer, who were in court on the 26th day of July, 2021, to witness the hearing on this case were intercepted and arrested on their way back home, at Lokoja by the Nigerian Security Agents, and till date, they are still being held in various detention facilities of the Nigerian Security Agents without access to their lawyers and family members. Though we have commenced legal action in court against the Security formations still detaining them in their various detention facilities.
This is indeed, how low the State can go in gross violation of citizen’ rights without these infractions being accounted for. But, be assured that justice will prevail for these dehumanised citizens in the end.
It is therefore, to be noted that court premises, particularly the court-room is not a barrack or police station where rules of engagement are treated with levity, and people subjected to all forms of inhuman treatment. We wish to note very strongly, that the atmosphere of fear, molestation, intimidation and harassment of civilians in and around the court premises should be jettisoned, as many foreign observers have arrived the country to witness this all important trial of a political prisoner.
3. We wish to remind the Security Agents that it was in a period such as this in 2015 and 2016 respectively, that citizens who merely came out in their numbers for show of solidarity with our Client on the day he was brought to Court, were massacred in their numbers at Ngwa National High School Aba, Abia State; Afor Nkpor, Onitsha Head-bridge, and Ziks Avenue in Anambra State.
We do not want a repeat of such gory incident, particularly now that people have chosen to remain indoors on this date in solidarity with our Client.
4. We also wish to state that the current tension and regular Monday sit-at-home being observed by our people in the South East, despite the exercise being called off by our Client’s peaceful movement, is steadily gaining momentum because our people are yet to see and believe that our Client Onyendu Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is still alive.
This suspicion was further fueled by his non-production in Court on the 26th day of July, 2021, for no tangible reason. Our people’s demand for his unconditional release from custody is a well-informed position, which the Government at the center, currently persecuting Mazi Nnamdi Kanu should give a listening ear to, and speedily activate the process towards his freedom, as he has committed no offence known to law.
5. That the Security Agents should avoid any situation that will result to any form of maltreatment to the Lawyers in court (whose constituency is that very court), the media, or those that will be attending Court in solidarity with our Client.
The World is watching. The show of shame openly demonstrated by the overzealous Security Agents on the 26th day of July, 2021. should never repeat itself.
6. We demand for justice, fair hearing/trial and fair play, which will not only be done in the open Court but manifestly be seen to have been done by an average person watching from close proximity.
On this note; arrest, molestation, rough handling and maltreatment of harmless civilians and sympathizers who are to be in court in show of solidarity, should not be allowed.
We also, wish to advise our Client’s supporters to bear in mind that not everybody will be able to access the court room on this day. Hence, wherever you find yourselves within the court’s environment, you all must remain civil in your conduct, as you have always been, and continue to supplicate to God Almighty even as the trial goes on.
Further note that our Objection to the competency or otherwise of the newly amended 7-count charge is now before the Court, and we believe most strongly that there shall be light at the end of the tunnel.
“We thank you all for being part of this briefing while promising you all that victory shall be ours, and justice shall prevail in the end. Thank you all and remain blessed. With love from all of us in the legal team.”
KanyiDaily recalls that Ifeanyi Ejiofor had said that the IPOB’s legal team is eminently prepared and that the federal government should expect “legal fireworks” on Thursday.