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Nnamdi Kanu trial: why the case was again adjourned

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Nnamdi Kanu trial: why the case was again adjourned

Nnamdi Kanu, the IPOB leader today in court rejected taking plea on the fresh 15-count charges leveled against him, ENigeria Newspaper reports.

ENigeria Newspaper reports that Kanu refused to take a plea on the fresh 15 count charges on the basis that he had not been briefed on the new charges filed against him.

The presiding judge however adjourned the matter till tomorrow January 19, 2022.

What happened in court
When the matter was called up in court, counsel to the prosecution S.M Labaran told the court that the prosecution was ready for the trial.

“My lord, this case is adjourned till today for trial and for the records, the prosecution is fully ready for the business of the day.”

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“We have an amended charge which is dated 14th January and filed on 17th January, containing 15 counts and pursuant to the Administration of Criminal Justice Act. We ask the court to substitute this charge with the one earlier filed on 20 October, 2021.”

Labaran asked the court to direct the Registrar to read the charge to the defendant for him to take his plea.
Counsel to the defendant, Mike Ozekhome in response to the court said that there were three motions slated for today.

He said, “My lord, the business of today has to do with three subsisting applications; one, application for transfer, two, a motion for bail of the defendant, and three; a preliminary objection raised to the earlier charge.”
He then told the judge that the amended charges were served on them just yesterday.

“With all respect sir, that is not justice, that is ambushing. This is the sixth amendment they are doing, and each time, they serve us the day before the hearing so as to frustrate the proceedings,” Ozekhome said.

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According to Nairametrics, Mr Ozekhome said Nnamdi Kanu is being asked to plead to a charge that he has not seen. He said it was not possible for the defendant to take the plea.

Justice Binta Nyako adjourned the matter till tomorrow to enable Kanu’s legal team brief him on the fresh charges.

What you should know
Heavy security presence was visible around the court premises as the security details at the federal high court today was double the usual.

The entire road leading to the federal high court was barricaded by the men of the Department of Security Service and the Nigerian police force.

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Commuters could be seen trekking a distance in order to be able to access their businesses around the area because of the restriction of movement by security operatives.

 

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