An Abia State High Court sitting in Umuahia has adjourned a fundamental rights suit instituted by leader of Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, against the Federal Government and seven others.
The suit was filed on August 27 on behalf of the IPOB leader by his counsel, Aloy Ejimakor, before the vacation judge, Justice KCJ Okereke.
When the matter came up yesterday for hearing, amid tight security, it was discovered that out of the eight respondents, only two – the DSS in Abuja and Umuahia – had filed their reply to the suit, even though their processes were said to have been filed out of time.
Though counsel to the DSS, Ms. Odukwe was in court, there was however no counsel appearing for, nor was anything received, from the other parties, which included the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Attorney-General of the Federation and Nigerian army.
It also emerged that apex Igbo socio-cultural organisation, Alaigbo Development Foundation (ADF), also filed an application seeking leave of the court to file an amicus (friend of court) brief in support of Kanu.
ADF is led by emeritus professor Uzodimma Nwala and the application was brought by its counsel, Max Ozoaka.
Ejimakor appeared for Kanu in company of several lawyers, including Patrick Agazie and Wilson Kalu.
Ruling for adjournment, Justice Okereke said Kanu shall be entitled to certain reliefs against any party that failed to timely respond to the suit, and adjourned the matter to a later date to enable respondents put up their defence.
Ejimakor expressed confidence in the capacity of the Abia High Court to uphold the law by enforcing Kanu’s human rights.
“There is an unbroken chain of Federal Government’s violations of Kanu’s constitutional rights that began with the lethal military invasion of his home in Umuahia and his flight to safety in 2017 and his extraordinary rendition to Nigeria in late June 2021,” he said.