The trial of the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People Of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu stalled on Tuesday after he objected to the fresh charges brought against him by the Federal Government.
The Federal Government had filed fresh terrorism charges against the detained IPOB leader before the Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday.
The action increased the initial counts bordering on treasonable felony and terrorism against Kanu from seven to 15.
But during his trial, which was held amid heavy security presence, Kanu objected to the fresh charges.
The court is now expected to reconvene on Wednesday for him to take his plea.
Earlier in the day, one of the Lead counsels for the IPOB Leader, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, announced that Human Rights Lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN), will now lead the delegation of lawyers representing Kanu.
Addressing journalists after the proceedings Ozekhome said: “I have consulted with my client with regards to the 15-count charge. Some of the statements made by him that were not clear, which I pointed out to the court, the prosecution has been able to give me a copy that is more legible. With that, we will take the next step. No one is running from a plea being taken. But the point we made today, which the court appreciated, is that you can’t take plea to counts that have not been given to you”.
“We were served some minutes to 10:00 am yesterday – a 15-count amended charge for a case coming up today, whereas, the last date of adjournment was 2nd of December so, they had well-over one month to do that but they didn’t.
“I believe that was intended to frustrate today’s proceedings. In any event, that was the 6th time they are amending the charge. Each time they amend, I file a preliminary objection, they go back to the drawing board to re-amend”.
Meanwhile, pro and anti-Nnamdi Kanu protesters on Tuesday hit the streets of Abuja.
While the anti- Kanu protesters accused the IPOP leader of treason and called for a speedy trial, the pro-Kanu group insisted it is within the rights of IPOB to demand independence from the Nigerian state.