Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), who is currently under detention, said that President Muhammadu Buhari committed a treasonable felony against Nigerian in 1983.
Kanu noted that the military coup that led to the emergence of Buhari as Head of State, on December 31, 1983 is a treasonable offence.
Buhari had in 1983 following a military coup against the democratic government of President Shehu Shagari, took over power and jailed some elected governors and politicians.
He urged Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court in Abuja to quash the 11-count treason charge the Federal Government entered against him and the other three pro-Biafra agitators Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi.
Kanu through his lawyer, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, said;
“My lord it was Buhari that committed treasonable felony in 1983 when he spearheaded a coup that overthrew a democratically elected government, not my client”.
The defendants said that there was “nothing contained in the proof of evidence to show that IPOB, people merely exercising their constitutionally guaranteed rights to self determination, freedom of expression and peaceful assembly, is an unlawful society/organisation”.
Kanu noted that the only evidence the Federal Government attached in support of the treason allegation against him and the other three was an extra judicial statement he made to the Department of State Services (DSS), statements by prosecution witnesses and highlight of alleged Radio Biafra broadcast.
He also stated that Radio Biafra was registered and was been operated under the United Kingdom Laws.
The defendants urged the court to nullify the charges against them and also discharge and acquit them.
However, Mr. Shuaibu Labaran, the Federal Government’s lawyer, in his response, told the judge to dismiss the defendant objections which according to him lacked substance.
Labaran noted that in-line with the provision of Section 396 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), reject the applications.
“My lord I listened carefully to adumbrations of the 1st defendant’s counsel and I ask myself, if he has this kind of defence, why then is he afraid of trial”, Labaran said.
Also, Kanu went before the Abuja Division of the Court of Appeal to challenge the December 1, 2016 ruling that denied them bail.
Kanu and the other defendants also challenged the decision of the trial judge to conduct secret trial on them.
Mazi Kanu has been in detention since October 14, 2015, when he was arrested by security operatives upon his arrival to Nigeria from United Kingdom.