IPOB: Court Throws Out Kanu’s Application For Stay Of Proceedings | Independent Newspapers Limited
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IPOB: Court Throws Out Kanu’s Application For Stay Of Proceedings

Nnamdi Kanu
Posted: Apr 26, 2016 at 1:46 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)


The Federal High Court, Abuja, Tuesday dismissed Mr. Nnamdi Kanu’s application for stay of proceedings pending determination of his appeal.

Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), had applied to the appeal court challenging the earlier decision of the court that upheld the prosecution’s request to shield witnesses from members of the public during trial.

Kanu and his co-defendants are on trial on a six-count charge of treasonable felony, unlawful possession of firearms and other offences bordering on their agitation for secession ?from Nigeria to form the Republic of Biafra.

In the case, Justice John Tsoho held that the application for stay of proceedings lacked merit and as such the trial would proceed in the mode earlier directed by the court.

Tsoho’s decision was based on the provisions of Section 306 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015, which prohibits courts from entertaining a motion for stay of proceedings with respect to criminal cases.

Contrary to the contention by Chuks Muoma (SAN), Kanu’s lawyer, Tsoho held that the provision of Section 306 of ACJA could not deny an accused person fair hearing.

The judge held that the provision of the ACJA was to enhance the right to speedy trial guaranteed in the Constitution.

The judge also distinguished the trial of the Biafra agitators from that of the Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, in which the Supreme Court, last year, after the advent of the ACJA, granted ?an order for stay of proceedings in his trial before the Code of Conduct Tribunal (CCT).

Tsoho held that the prevailing circumstances informing the decision of the Supreme Court to grant stay of proceedings in Saraki’s case was not available in the case at hand.