Nnamdi Kanu Declares He Won’t Beg for Release, Citing Late Pa Mbazulike Amechi’s Experience

Mazi Nnamdi Kanu

Detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has conveyed his firm decision not to beg for his release from custody. This comes after he was cleared of charges by Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja. Kanu’s stance was revealed in a letter dated August 25, 2023, and signed by his lead counsel, Mike Ozekhome, SAN. The contents of the letter were shared with the public on August 28, 2023.

Kanu’s counsel, Mike Ozekhome, had previously expressed concerns about the substandard conditions of the detention facility where Kanu was being held by the Department of State Services (DSS). The lawyer sought the intervention of the Chief Judge of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory to appoint a Magistrate for an inspection of the detention center.

In the letter, Kanu highlighted that requesting his freedom at this juncture would be an affront to the memory of the late Pa Mbazulike Amechi. Kanu pointed out that despite his advanced age and poor health, Amechi had made multiple trips from the South-East to Abuja, pleading with the Federal Government to fulfill his dying wish. Unfortunately, Amechi’s appeals were disregarded by the government.

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During a meeting between Nnamdi Kanu and his legal team and family, the IPOB leader expressed gratitude to those advocating for his release. He emphasized that his discharge was affirmed by the Court of Appeal’s judgment on October 13, 2022, which not only discharged him but also barred any further trial or detention. Therefore, he maintained, there were no pending charges against him.

Kanu further argued that his situation warranted the Supreme Court to expedite the hearing of the appeal filed by the Federal Government. He urged people of goodwill to call for the Supreme Court to set a date for the speedy hearing of the appeal as per the Criminal Appeals Practice Directions.

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The legal team, led by Prof. Mike Ozekhome, SAN, took actions to address the challenges Kanu faced in detention. They initiated an application to the Chief Judge of the Federal Capital Territory, requesting the appointment of a Magistrate to inspect the DSS facility where Kanu had been held in solitary confinement since June 2021. The team also initiated contempt proceedings against the State Security Service and its Director General for failing to comply with court orders.

In light of these developments, the fate of Nnamdi Kanu’s detention and legal battle remains a subject of intense public attention and debate.

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