The Leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, on Wednesday asked the British government to send delegates to monitor proceedings during his January 18 trial at the Federal High Court, Abuja.
In a letter titled: “Request for delegate(s)/representative(s) to observe court proceedings In Re: Charge NO. FHC/ABJ/CR/383/2015, Federal Republic Of Nigeria V. Nnamdi Kanu’, written on his behalf by the Lead Counsel, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, and addressed to the British High Commission, the activist said the presence of the representatives in court would ensure a fair hearing in his trial for alleged treasonable felony and other charges filed against him by the Federal Government.
The letter read: “We act as Barristers and Solicitors to Mazi Nnamdi Kanu; we write this request to Her Excellency, on behalf of our client and with his consent and authority, may we respectively notify Her Excellency, of criminal proceedings in respect to the seven-count amended charge preferred against our client and pending at the Federal High court division in Abuja, is due to continue on the 18th, 19th and 20th of January, 2022.
“Given the foregoing, may we gratefully please request Her Excellency to send representatives of the High Commission to observe the proceedings of the court on those adjourned dates and on any other date to which further proceedings in the cause may be adjourned until the matter may be disposed of.
“The need to ensure that our client is given a fair trial has compelled us to make this request.
“The British government owes our client, a British citizen, a sacred duty to ensure that the whole process of his trial is fair and just in all circumstances.
“It must be remembered that his purported indictment on criminal charges has a political undercurrent. This fact impels all truly democratic countries of the world.
“This fact impels all truly democratic institutions of the world, to keep a close, watchful and attentive eye on the whole judicial process that has intervened to determine his culpability.
“The Nigerian Government, clearly, has a profound interest in the criminal charge pending against our client and the outcome of his trial.
“The said Government overreached itself by ensuring that our client was brought back to Nigeria by every means possible.
“Some leading members of the Government have also made certain unsavoury comments about our client. For this reason, we view as compelling the need to invite representatives of true democratic institutions of the world to observe court proceedings in relation to his trial.
“Further, we view the recent extra-judicial comment made by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in a media chat he had with two journalists about the pending trial of our client with circumspection.
“We firmly believe that the comment approximates a taunt. To forestall any undesirable consequence that may eventuate on it, we consider it expedient that truly democratic institutions of the world send representatives to observe proceedings of the trial of our client.
“We firmly believe that the presence of those representatives in court would make all parties tow the path of honour and rectitude and assure the fair trial of our client.
“In view of the foregoing, and anticipating your indulgence, may we then respectfully request you to forward to us the name of at least a representative, to enable us formally notify the court of his expected presence in court on the adjourned dates.
“We also wish to use this opportunity to appeal to the United Nations to prevail on the Nigerian Government to caution her security agents.”
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