IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu granted bail as Fayose shames Igbo Governors
The leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, has been granted bail on health conditions. The bail is the first since the commencement of his trial for alleged treason.
In a brief ruling, the presiding judge, Justice Binta Nyako, said that she was convinced that Kanu was ill and needed more medical attention than the Nigerian Prisons was giving him.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, and former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, were in court, according to them, as a sign of solidarity with Kanu even as South East Governors and other prominent Igbo leaders stayed away.
“The first defendant, Nnamdi Kanu, has appealed to the court for bail based on health grounds and it is only the living that can stand trial.
“So I am minded to grant him bail so that he can attend to his health and face his trial alive,” Justice Nyako said.
She, however, gave 12 conditions which Mr. Kanu must fulfill to be released on bail, and to continue to enjoy the temporary freedom.
Mr. Kanu and three others are facing trial on allegations of treason among others. Justice Nyako however refused bail to the three other defendants standing trial with Kanu, namely Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi.
The judge maintained that the only reason she admitted Mr. Kanu to bail was because of his ill health. She said although the charge of terrorism had been struck out against the defendants, the charge of treasonable felony hanging over them was a very serious offence.
She also refused a second application by the three defendants seeking a review of her earlier ruling that witnesses who were security personnel should be protected.
She said although the defendants had made the application for variation of the ruling based on the grounds that the charge of terrorism had been dropped, the charge of treasonable felony was equally a grave one.
Based on this, she said she would stick to her earlier ruling that as long as the witnesses were security personnel, they would testify behind a curtain or wear a mask.
She adjourned the matter till July 11 and 12, for definite commencement of trial.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, and former Minister of Aviation, Osita Chidoka, were in court, according to them, as a sign of solidarity with Kanu.
Mr. Kanu was arrested in 2015 on an 11-count charge bordering on terrorism and treasonable felony.
The Ekiti state governor, Ayodele Fayose while giving reasons for appearing in court for Nnamdi Kanu’s trial today, Tuesday, April 25 stressed that he was there to show solidarity to the accused. Fayose, who wore an Igbo cap to the court, told journalists outside the courtroom that Kanu is a Nigerian who was being treated unjustly for no reason. The governor said it is unfortunate that many Nigerians are treated in the same way like Kanu.
His words: “This nation belongs to all of us, I have come to identify with the Igbo people. My position remains that Kanu will one day walk into freedom in this our great country.” The governor’s presence elicited jubilation from members of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) gathered outside the courtroom. Also present at the court were former ministers of aviation, Osita Chidoka and Femi Fani-Kayode.
Fayose and Kanu at the court today, April 25 NAIJ.com observed that the IPOB members who stormed the court today were in their thousands as all adjoining road leading to the court were filled with IPOB members adorning the souvenirs of the group. IPOB supporters in court today, April 24 Meanwhile, Kanu has been granted bail on health grounds. The IPOB leader is expected to provide three sureties, one of who must be a serving senator, a religious leader and a highly respected person, all of who must own a land in anywhere in Abuja. The bail bond is N100 million for each surety.
He was also ordered never to grant any press interview pending the outcome of his trial and not be in a gathering of more than 10 persons at a time. The judge on the matter Justice Binta Nyako said Kanu’s bail will be revoked if any of the orders are flouted. However, the other accused persons were denied bail.
The conditions for Kanu’s bail in brief:
— Mr. Kanu must not hold rallies.
— He must not grant interviews.
— He must not be in a crowd of more than 10 people.
— He must provide three sureties in the sum of N100 million each.
— One of the sureties must be a senior highly placed person of Igbo extraction such as a senator.
— The second surety must be a highly respected Jewish leader since Mr. Kanu said his religion is Judaism
— The third surety must be a highly respected person who owns landed property and is resident in Abuja
— The IPOB leader must deposit his Nigerian passport
— He must also deposit his British passport with the court
— He must provide the court with reports on the progress of his health and treatment on a monthly basis.