The Supreme Court has scheduled December 15 as the date for announcing its decision on the appeal aiming to compel the Federal Government to release Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), from detention.
A five-member panel led by Justice Kudirat Kekere-Ekun at the apex court approved the case for judgment following the adoption of final briefs of argument by counsels for both the Federal Government and the detained IPOB leader.
The team of lawyers representing the Federal Government is headed by Mr. T. A. Gazzali, SAN, an Acting Director of Civil Appeals at the Federal Ministry of Justice.
On the other side, Mr. Kanu Agabi, SAN, a former Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, led Kanu’s legal team.
Agabi, SAN, headed Kanu’s legal team, but it was Prof. Mike Ozehkome, SAN, who presented his appeal to the apex court panel.
Ozehkome, SAN, prayed the court to not only order the immediate release of his client from detention but to equally award a “very heavy and punitive cost” against the Federal Government.
Meanwhile, Federal Government’s counsel, Gazzali, SAN, urged the highest court to maintain the modified brief of argument he had filed on May 3, 2023, in his presentation.
He requested the court to grant the federal government’s appeal, overturn the Court of Appeal’s decision to release Kanu, and instruct the continuation of his terrorism-related trial at the Federal High Court in Abuja.
Gazzali, SAN, further urged the apex court to dismiss Kanu’s Cross-Appeal.
The Court of Appeal in Abuja issued a judgment on October 13, 2022, ordering Kanu’s release from detention.
The appellate court’s three-member panel unanimously struck down all 15 counts of terrorism charges that the FG had levied against the detained IPOB leader in the Federal High Court in Abuja.
The court said that the government blatantly disregarded established laws by forcibly extraditing Kanu from Kenya to continue his trial in the country.
The Federal Government, in disagreement with the ruling, opted to take the case to the Supreme Court.
The Federal Government also convinced the appellate court to delay the execution of the judgment while its appeal was under review.