The planned re-arraignment of the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) Nnamdi Kanu on an amended terrorism charge was stalled on Tuesday before a Federal High Court in Abuja.
At the mention of the case, lead defence lawyer, Mike Ozekhome (SAN) sought for time to enable him study the amended 15-count charge filed by the prosecution on January 17, 2022.
Ozekhome argued that the defence was ambushed with the fresh charge by the prosecution.
He claimed that the proof of evidence served on the defence by the prosecution was not legible enough to enable them know what constitutes the fresh charge.
“My Lord, as I am talking now, the defendant does not know the charge yet. He is just interacting with me. He cannot be made to take his plea in relation to a charge he has not seen.
“The principle of fair hearing is just being violated by the Federal Government. The frail looking defendant standing in the dock there has not been allowed to access his family as directed by this honourable court.
“I went to DSS to see him and I was almost stripped naked before I could see him.
“We pray that the arraignment be adjourned till tomorrow to enable his lawyers study the new charge along with him in the interest of Justice,” Ozekhome said.
Lead prosecuting lawyer, Magaji Labaran faulted the defence’s claim that the amended charge was an ambush.