The federal high court in Abuja has ordered the arrest of the leader of the indigenous people of Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu, and directed that his trial on charges of treasonable felony should proceed in his absence.
The judge, Justice Binta Nyako, whose decision was anchored on the provisions of section 352 sub-section 4 of the administrative of criminal justice act, 2015, said Kanu had failed to appear in court since April 25, 2017 without any reasonable explanation.
The lead prosecuting counsel, Mr. Magaji Labaran, applied for the court’s orders earlier in the today’s proceedings.
Kanu’s lawyer, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, had opposed Labaran’s oral application, and had asked to be given more time to explain why his client had not been in court by filing all necessary papers.
He insisted that Kanu’s disappearance was as a result of soldiers’ invasion of the Ipob leader’s home in Afara-ukwu near Umuahia, Abia state, during military’s ‘operation python dance ii’ staged to quell agitation for a republic of Biafra.
But the judge, noting that she had, in a judgment on a civil suit filed by Kanu, held that there was no nexus between the said military invasion and the Ipob leader’s disappearance, overruled the objection, insisting that the request for explanation of the defendant’s absence in court was belated.