A Magistrate’s court in Wuse Zone 2 of the Federal Capital Territory has fixed December 16 for ruling on charges instituted against the Director of Radio Biafra, Mr. Nnamdi Kanu, by the Department of State Service.
The magistrate had on November 22, 2015, adjourned earlier adjourned for his ruling on an application by the DSS through its lawyer, Mr. Moses Idakwo, to discontinue the case. The ruling was earlier scheduled for December 1, 2015 but the presiding magistrate, Shuaibu Usman, could not sit because he was bereaved.
Mr. Moses Idakwo had on November 22 applied for the discontinuance of the charges against Kanu in line with provisions of section 108(1) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 due to what he described as fresh facts in the case which could not be entertained under the court’s jurisdiction.
On December 1, when ruling was scheduled to be delivered on the application, the magistrate who was said to be bereaved did not sit. The DSS did not also produce the accused in court, despite the absence of Kanu from court, there was a large number of his supporters waving Biafra flag in front of the court premises.
The supporters peacefully left the usual point of convergence during previous court sessions at about 9.45am apparently after realising that Kanu would not be produced in court and that the court would not sit.
Nnamdi Kanu’s lawyers, led by Mr. Jude Aboje, had during the hearing on November 22 opposed the application for discontinuance of the case, demanding that the orders of the court directing the release of the accused from DSS custody must be complied with before the case was struck out.
He said the prosecution intended to discontinue the case in order to institute fresh charges against the accused before the court with the requisite jurisdiction.
Idakwo, said contrary to the impression created by the defence lawyers, the accused persons had not met the bail conditions imposed by the court as the DSS was still in the process of verifying the location and worth of the landed property presented by the surety as directed by the court.
Mr. Jude Aboje urged the magistrate not to grant the prosecution’s application until the order of the court granting bail to the accused person and the other directing DSS to relinquish custody of the accused person to prison authorities were complied with.
He accused the prosecution of not being diligent enough in the verification of the property presented by the surety.
He also accused the DSS of going behind his client to obtain order from Justice Adeniyi Ademola of a Federal High Court in Abuja to obtain an order to keep the accused in custody for 90 days through an ex parte application after the magistrate’s court had earlier granted him (Kanu) bail on October 19.
Replying on points of law, Idakwo debunked the allegation of secretly obtaining the order of the Federal High Court to keep Kanu in custody, arguing that the law permitted the DSS to apply for such order only through ex-parte application.