By Emeka Mamah
ENUGU—INDIGENOUS People of Biafra, IPOB, has commended Justice Binta Murtala-Nyako over the “uncommon courage” she displayed in the trial of Boko Haram suspected terrorists and asked her to adopt same yardstick used for the terrorists by dismissing the treason charges against IPOB members in her court due to lack of diligent prosecution.
This was contained in a statement signed by the Head of Directorate of State, HoDos, IPOB World Headquarters, Langenfeld Germany, Mazi Chika Edoziem, and made available to journalists in Enugu yesterday.
IPOB stated that Justice Murtala- Nyako dismissed terrorism charges against two Boko Haram suspects on the grounds of lack of diligent prosecution by the Office of the Attorney General of the Federation, AGF, pointing out that the same yardstick should be used in dismissing the charges against IPOB members, who had been languishing in jail since 2015 without trial.
According to IPOB, none of its members had taken the life of any Nigerian or committed any act of violence whatsoever, hence there was no moral or legal justification for the indefinite detention of IPOB activists in Nigerian prisons.
“We believe that what is good for Boko Haram suspects is also good for Biafra activists, who never bombed or killed anybody unlike Boko Haram and herdsmen,” IPOB added.
In the statement titled, “Re: Justice Binta Murtala- Nyako should do justice to IPOB the same way she did to Boko Haram suspects,” the pro-Biafra agitators said: “The IPOB hereby acknowledges Justice Binta Murtala-Nyako for the uncommon courage she demonstrated days ago in dismissing terrorism charges against two Boko Haram suspects on the grounds of lack of diligent prosecution by the office of the AGF..
“We consider this a landmark decision that not only binds her court in all similar cases but should also serve as an example to other courts before whom such prosecutorial misconduct continues unabated, especially with regards to IPOB members including Benjamin Madubugwu, David Nwawusi, Bright Chimezie Ishinwa and Chidiebere Onwudiwe, who had been languishing in detention since 2015 without trial.
“More particularly, we expect the Hon. Justice before whom charges have been pending against the above IPOB members, and our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, to do justice and likewise dismiss the said charges for the following reasons:
“With regard to our leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, it is undisputed that he has been ready for trial since he was arrested and charged in 2015 but the prosecution has proved unserious with the trial.
“Instead, it has resorted to the dilatory tactics of filing several applications for amendment of the charges which were all granted by Justice Nyako. And just when it was becoming clear that trial must ensue and no further prosecutorial delay will be entertained, the complainant (Federal Government) resorted to the use of lethal military force to extra-judicially murder Nnamdi Kanu in order to permanently deny him his day in court to prove his innocence.
“As regards the other IPOB patriots charged together with Mazi Kanu, the story is the same and even worse as they have been denied bail and locked up in prison since 2015 while the prosecution continues to demonstrate an abject lack of diligent prosecution through incessant applications for amendment of charges.”