The President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government has explained why it arrested the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Nnamdi Kanu, in Kenya and returned him to Nigeria. It explained that Kanu was subjected to extraordinary rendition from Kenya so he could continue his ongoing trial in Nigeria.
The explanation was contained in the Federal Government’s amended notice of appeal before the Supreme Court marked: SC/CR/1361/2022. The appeal was against the October 13, 2022, judgment of the Court of Appeal in Abuja, where it held that Kanu’s extraordinary rendition from Kenya to Nigeria robs the trial court of its jurisdiction to try him on the seven-count charge on which he was being tried before the IPOB leader absconded.
In the 13-ground amended notice of appeal filed by David Kaswe of the Federal Ministry of Justice, the Federal Government argued that the Appeal Court erred when they “held that the extraordinary rendition of the Kanu robbed the trial court of the jurisdiction to hear the pending charges before the court even before the respondent illegally jumped bail and absconded.
“Kanu was standing trial on a 5-count charge preferred against him by the federal government. In the course of proceedings, he illegally jumped bail and absconded from Nigeria. The respondent was only returned to Nigeria to continue his trial before the court,” it said. The Federal Government accused the Appeal Court of failing to consider the illegality of Kanu jumping bail and his refusal to make himself available for trial, which necessitated his return to Nigeria. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court okayed the Federal Government to file nine grounds of appeal. A five-man panel of the apex court led by Justice John Okoro granted the Federal Government permission for the appeal.