Human rights lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), who is the lead counsel to the embattled leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, has told Justice Binta Nyako of a Federal High Court in Abuja that his client’s sight had deteriorated.
Mike Ozekhome Makes Case For Nnamdi Kanu
KanyiDaily recalls that Justice Nyako had on January 18 ordered that Kanu be allowed to change his clothes, practice his Jewish faith, and have access to family members in the detention facility.
During Kanu’s trial on Wednesday, Ozekhome bemoaned that despite an express order of the court, the Department of State Services (DSS) had declined to allow the IPOB leader have a change of clothing.
Ozekhome, who also moved two applications for quashing of the 15-count charges against Kanu, informed the court that since his extradition from Kenya in 2021, his client’s eyeglasses had remained seized while he had not been allowed to change clothes.
He said, “My lord will still see the defendant in the same uniform which my lord warned against in the last proceedings. It will be recalled that they had on that day, alleged that he said that he preferred to wear the same cloth because it is a designer.
“However, since that time, the younger brother of the defendant, his lawyer, and sister have gone three times with materials for him to change but they refused to collect them.
“So bad was it that Ejiofor had to call the Director of Legal Services and complained to him, and the director told him that he would do something about it, that he would contact the Director of Operations to ensure that the order was carried out. But since then, nothing has been done, they have not allowed him to change his clothes.”
On the issue of Kanu’s deteriorating eyesight, Ozekhome, said: “My lord, since 2015, his glasses were taken from him. The one he wore before his extraordinary rendition from Kenya was also taken from him. Till now, he does not have glasses to wear and his eye-sight is deteriorating.”
Responding the DSS Director of Legal Services informed the court that the cloths brought by Kanu’s family had a lion’s heart on them which offends the department’s operational procedure.
When Justice Nyako asked the defendant what type of clothes he would rather prefer to put on, he maintained, “I want to wear the clothes of my people, ‘Isi Agu’.”
In a brief ruling, the court refused the application for use of the native wear and ordered the DSS to provide him with his pair of eyeglasses.
Justice Nyako subsequently adjourned the case to April 8 for ruling on the defence application to quash the 15-count charges.
KanyiDaily recalls that during his previous trial, Nnamdi Kanu had pleaded not guilty to 15-count charges bordering on treasonable felony and terrorism instituted against him by the Federal Governmnt at the Federal High Court in Abuja.