Supreme Court Sets December 15 for Nnamdi Kanu’s Fate Determination
BY ADEKE CHUKWUKA
The Supreme Court has scheduled December 15 to announce its judgment on the appeal urging the Federal Government to release Nnamdi Kanu, the embattled leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), from detention.
The Supreme Court’s five-member panel, led by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun, approved the judgment date for the appeal concerning the release of Nnamdi Kanu. Representatives from both the Federal Government and Kanu’s legal team, led by Mr. T. A. Gazzali, SAN, and Mr. Kanu Agabi, SAN, respectively, presented their final arguments.
In the appeal led by Prof. Mike Ozehkome, SAN, on behalf of Nnamdi Kanu, he urged the Supreme Court to order his immediate release and impose significant costs on the Federal Government. Ozehkome argued for substantial justice, emphasizing Kanu’s prolonged detention despite a previous court order for his release. He pleaded for the court to demonstrate that no individual or government is above the law, drawing parallels with the precedent set in the case of Ojukwu Vs State.
In the Supreme Court hearing, FG’s lawyer, Gazzali, SAN, requested the court to uphold the amended brief of argument filed in May 2023. He urged the court to allow FG’s appeal, overturn the Court of Appeal’s release order for Kanu, and resume his trial on terrorism charges at the Federal High Court in Abuja. Additionally, Gazzali, SAN, called for the dismissal of Kanu’s Cross-Appeal.
The Court of Appeal in Abuja, in a unanimous decision on October 13, 2022, ordered the release of Nnamdi Kanu from detention. The court also dismissed a 15-count terrorism charge filed by the FG against the detained IPOB leader in the Federal High Court in Abuja. The appellate court stated that the FG violated laws by forcibly bringing Kanu from Kenya, stripping the trial court of jurisdiction to continue the trial due to the government’s arbitrary use of power.
The Federal Government, unhappy with the Court of Appeal’s ruling, appealed the decision to the Supreme Court and successfully obtained a suspension of the judgment’s execution while awaiting the Supreme Court’s determination of its appeal.
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