IPOB: ‘Kanu must be declared a terrorist’

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The Embassy of the United States of America (U.S.A) in Nigeria and its spokesman Russel Brooks have been dragged before a Federal High court sitting in Abuja over the comments and the stand of the US government on the Indigenous People of Biafra, when it was proscribed by the Nigerian Government last month.

The Federal Government last month secured an ordered of the court proscribing IPOB as a terrorist organisation.

But the U.S. Embassy, through its spokesman said IPOB is not a terrorist organisation under US laws.

In the suit, dated and filed 11th October,2017, the plaintiff, Nze Charles Ugwu, through his lawyer, Simon Kanshio, Esq. UGWU claimed that Nigerian laws are not inferior to laws of other countries and that the statement by the US Spokesman was to undermine the sovereignty of the Nigerian state which is anchored on its constitution.

He wants the court to compel the spokesman to withdraw his statement and declare the embassy as a promoter of terrorists’ activities in line with the Terrorism Act.

But the plaintiff asked the court to determine the following terms

“Whether by a true interpretation of sections 1, 4 and 5 of the Terrorism (Prevention) (Amendment) Act, 2013 and the United Nations Convention on Terrorism the 1st Defendant’s statement endorsing the proscribed terrorist group named Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) does not amount to promoting terrorism in Nigeria?

“Whether the United States of America represented in Nigeria through the second Defendant is no longer obligated to be bound by the United Nation Convention on Terrorism which the United States of America signed and ratified?

“Whether the third Defendant as the Chief Law Officer of the Federation is not duty bound under the Terrorism (Prevention) (Amendment) Act, 2013 to advise President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR to declare the 1st Defendant a persona non grata for supporting the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) a proscribed terrorist group, thereby promoting terrorism in Nigeria?

He also prayed the court for the following reliefs:

“A declaration that by true interpretation of Sections 1, 4 and 5 of the Terrorism (Prevention) (Amendment) Act, 2013 and the United Nations Convention on Terrorism the statement of the 1st Defendant from the office of the 2nd Defendant endorsing the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), an organization proscribed and labelled as a terrorist group by a Nigerian court presided over by Honourable Justice Abdul Adamu Kafarati on 19th September, 2017 is tantamount to supporting and inciting terrorism and violence in Nigeria.

“A declaration that the 1st and 2nd Defendants representing the United States of America in Nigeria are under absolute obligation to obey Nigerian laws both statutory and judicial so far as they are within the territory of Nigeria irrespective of their personal opinions, perceptions or ideologies.

“An order compelling the 1st and 2nd Defendants to withdraw their endorsement of the terrorist group named Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) within Seven (7) days of delivery of judgment in this case.

“An order directing the first defendant to apologise to the Federal Government of Nigeria in 10 national dailies upon delivery of judgment in this case as his statement endorsing the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), despite the judgment of the court proscribing them as a terrorist group, is an affront to the Judiciary with the attendant effect of undermining the sovereignty of the Nigerian State.

“The plaintiff, an indigene of Enugu State but resident in Kano State, in an affidavit in support of the suit said Kanu and his fellow members of IPOB went about his so called freedom agitation in a violent manner which has led to killing of hundreds of persons and destruction of properties worth billions of naira within the last two years, thus necessitating the arrest of Kanu and some of his men.

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Gist Arena: IPOB: ‘Kanu must be declared a terrorist’
IPOB: ‘Kanu must be declared a terrorist’
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