A magistrates’ court sitting in Abia state on Wednesday, September 27, remanded 14 members of IPOB in Aba Federal Prison.
The 14 members of IPOB remanded on Wednesday are: Anthony Nnamani (20 years), Chima Chukwumere (22 years), Kingsley Sunday (21 years), Michael Onyedikachi(26 years), Eze Okereke (25 years), Christian Sylvester (45 years), Etim Effiong Ade (22 years) and Emmanuel Onwukwe( 29 years).
Others are Ndubuisi Ukoha (29 years), Ogbonna Nwaji (24 years), Salvation Stephen (22 years), Chizoba Nwosu (21 years), Ejike Elom (21 years) and Kelechi Anusie (26 years).
They were arraigned on eight count of conspiracy, murder, arson, unlawful association, unlawful assembly, stealing with other two charges dealing on burning of the Ariaria Divisional Police Headquarters building and the cars at the premises.
While police prosecutor Gabriel Ogbonna urged the court to commence trial since according to him, the court had the jurisdiction to hear the matter, counsel to the 1st, 2nd and 5th accused persons, Charles Onuchukwu, objected to the prosecutor’s position, saying that the court lacked jurisdiction to hear cases of murder as contained on count 2 of the charge sheet.
Onuchukwu also argued that the issue of ”holding charge” was unconstitutional and unknown to law. The trial magistrate after listening to the argument of the prosecutor and counsel to the accused persons ordered that the accused persons were remanded to prison custody and ordered that the case file be transferred to the office of the Attorney General for advice The case was adjourned to Wednesday, October 4, for report of compliance.
The court presided over by Ogbonna Adiele had on Monday, September 18, remanded seven accused IPOB members in the same prison facility.
The seven members of the secessionist group are: Chinonso Ude (30 years), Maduabuchi Echereodo (25 years), Ugochukwu Ikechukwu (32 years), Okechukwu Daniel (20 years), Ifeanyi Sunday (33 years), Okezie Jeremiah (26 years) and Chizuruoke Nwauzo (27 years).
According to The Nation, they were charged with terrorism, kidnapping and use of offensive weapons by the Nigerian police.
Meanwhile, a civil society group has alleged that some members of the already proscribed IPOB have started migrating to other separatist groups to continue their agitation for Biafra. They alleged that a group Biafra Zionists Federation (BZF) led by one Benjamin Onwuka have started enticing members of the IPOB to defect to his group.