Biafra: Agitation For Secession Not An Offence Under Nigerian Law – IPOB Tells Court

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Biafra: Agitation For Secession Not An Offence Under Nigerian Law – IPOB Tells Court

Post by olamide » Sun Mar 25, 2018 11:27 am

The Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) has argued that agitation for secession is not an offence under the Nigerian laws.

IPOB said this in reaction to the secret trial of its elusive leader, Nnamdi Kanu’s co-defenders, Bright Chimezie, Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi.

In a statement by its spokesperson, Emma Powerful, IPOB questioned the jurisdiction of the Federal High court sitting in Abuja to proceed with the trial of its members over treasonable felony.

IPOB said it has instructed its lawyers to challenge the court’s jurisdiction and to strike out the charge of ‘Treasonable Felony’ against it’s members on the grounds of what a prosecution witness said, “agitating for self-determination or secession is not a crime known to any Nigerian law.”

He said, “We the worldwide family of the Indigenous People of Biafra wishes to draw the attention of the civilized world to what transpired at Justice Binta Nyako’s court in Abuja on March 22, 2018 at the commencement of the trial of four innocent Biafrans.

“The world must know that they are standing trial for offences not known to any law in Nigeria.”

Below is the transcript of government witness statement under oath in the court of Justice Binta Nyako – March 22, 2018.

Transcript of Testimony of PW1, DSS Officer, Emmanuel Isaac, aka AB.

(As Recorded suo sponte by Aloy Ejimakor).

Prelude: On the cue of Prosecution Counsel (LABARAN) on Direct, Witness AB identified Bright Chimezie and Onwudiwe by name, but stated that it’s only Chimezie he ‘has something to say about, not Onwudiwe’.


Question (Q). In November 2016, can you tell the court where you were posted?

Answer (Ans). I was at the Department of investigations, headquarters, SSS, Abuja.

Q. Tell court how you met first Defendant (Bright Chimezie).

Ans. I met him on 25th November 2016 when he was brought to my department. My head of department directed me to interview him and then I took him to my office which I share with other officers. When we got to my office, I offered him a seat and we had a little interaction. And in the course of the interaction, I asked him why he was arrested. He told me voluntarily the reason why he was arrested and where he was arrested.

Q. After interaction, what followed.

Ans. I asked if he can write what he told me out of his own accord. During that interaction, before then I told him that you are here and nobody will force you. I cautioned him that nobody is forcing you, but if you tell me anything voluntarily, it will be used against you in court.

Q. What happened after.

Ans. I gave him a form – the statement form to reduce what he told me verbally in writing. He proved to me that he can write. He filled the statement form, and then wrote what he told me verbally and then he endorsed it. Then I now asked him, whether it’s ok, and he said it’s ok, whereupon I endorsed the statement.

Q. Then what.

Ans. I handed the statement to my superior officer, who asked Chimezie if he made such statement, he said he did, and then my superior officer endorsed it.

Q. Can you recognize the statement.

Ans. Yes, because it bears logo of SSS and also it should bear my signature.

*** Whereupon he identified the Statement which the Court then marked as Exhibit PW1A ***

Q. Did you do make any findings in the course of your job as an investigator.

Ans. Yes. I investigated and found out that he is a member of ipob. He joined in PH. And my investigation also revealed that he was the one that took delivery of the container imported by IPOB AS A GROUP, containing a Transmitter. I discovered that he bright took the container to one Benjamin Madubugwu. I also discovered that in that 2016, he was in charge of the welfare of wives of members of ipob. And being in charge of that welfare, he severally collected money from some of group members based in abroad.

Q. Is that all?

Ans. That’s all



Q. Can you remind me that your name again.

Ans. AB.

Q. Can you tell this court when Bright was arrested.

Ans. I don’t know when he arrested. I only know when I met him.

Q. Can you tell this court at what point the first Defendant was arrested.

Ans. Like I said earlier I was not part of the team that arrested him. So I don’t know when he was arrested.

Q. Can you tell this court how long first Defendant has been in the custody of your office.

Ans. I don’t know.

Q. Are you aware that the first Defendant when he was arrested in Uyo made a statement at your office in Uyo.

Ans. I am not aware.

Q. How many times did you visit Uyo where first Defendant was arrested to conduct investigation.

Ans. I did not visit Uyo.

Q. Did he tell you why he was arrested.

Ans. Yes.

Q. In the course of telling you why he was arrested, as an investigating SSS officer for six years, tell this court why you did not go as far as finding out where and why he was arrested.

** HERE LABARAN (Lead Prosecutor) OBJECTED on grounds of ‘witness intimidation’.

And C. IGWE explains to the Court… that ‘My intention for this line of questioning is to find out whether he actually investigated this case’.

COURT OVERRULES THE OBJECTION, whereupon C. IGWE continues with the Cross …

Q. Tell this court, how many times you visited Uyo or the place of his arrest.

Ans. I did not visit Uyo.

Q. Tell this court how you found out those things you said you found out during your investigation.

Ans. We have our way of conducting investigation and that’s not what I should be lecturing you.

** Whereupon the court interjected angrily and directed that he should answer the question on how. And the he continued and stated … my department and the investigation team went further to confirm the statement of the first Defendant and a search team made a search and they discovered a container and Bright Chimezie confirmed that he took delivery of the container and he made mention of the person who cleared the container and when he cleared it.

Q. Tell this court the point the first Defendant was told the offense he committed.

Ans. First Defendant confessed to the offense.


C. IGWE, Esq applied for exhibition of PW1A to the Witness. Whereupon the clerk gave it to the Witness.

Cross Examination continues …

Q. Bright wrote that statement and you endorsed and your superior officer endorsed it. Read out what the first Defendant wrote.

Whereupon … Witness began to read the statement and finished it to the end.

Q. Can you tell this court whether the statement you just read was made voluntarily or as a response to questions you put to him.

Ans. No.

Q. How long the was the first Defendant in custody of SSS before he was arraigned before this court two days ago.

Ans. I don’t know.

Q. You told the court that you made findings in the course of your investigation. Right?

Ans. Point of correction. I said … in the course of the investigations, not necessarily my own investigation.

Q. So, you did not make any findings yourself. True or false.

Ans. False.

Q. But you said that Nnamdi Kanu and Chimezie imported the container.

Ans. I did not say that. I said that findings were made that Chimezie took delivery of container imported by IPOB on instructions of Nnamdi Kanu and took it to Madubugwu.

Q. As the principal or major investigator, did you extend your investigation to the wharf to truly ascertain the container.

Ans. No. I did not travel to the wharf.

Q. Did you extend your ‘findings’ to the wharf.

Ans. No. I did not.

Q. Why didn’t you think it was necessary to find out if this container was coming from a nigerian wharf. Or was the container cleared at the wharf or smuggled in.

Ans. I wouldn’t know whether it was cleared or smuggled.

Q. When you made the findings that he took delivery of the container, did you extend the findings to finding out whether his name was on the Bill of Lading.

Ans. No.

Q. Am I right to say that when you were giving testimony, you stated that the container was imported by IPOB.

Ans. Yes I said so.

Q. Do you know the content of the container that Chimezie took delivery of.

Ans. No. I don’t know.

Q. Are the contents of the container contraband.

Ans. I wouldn’t know.

Q. How did you find out that the container was imported by IPOB.

Ans. He confessed to it.

Q. You keep saying my team my team, are you part of the team.

Ans. No. I am not part of the team.

Q. Would I be right to say the you as a person, you are not even sure that a transmitter was part of the items imported. Or at what point did you find out that the transmitter discovered was part of the products in the container imported by IPOB as you said.

Ans. As I said before, it was the first Defendant that confirmed that it is a transmitter when the picture was posted online.

Q. So, would I be right to say that you first found out it was a transmitter only the day you interviewed the first Defendant at your office.

Ans. Yes.

Q. Was the transmitter part of the items imported in the container that first Defendant took delivery of.

Ans. Yes.



Q. How long have you worked in investigation department.

Ans. Four years.

Q. What formal training did you receive as investigator.

Ans. I have undergone some training in accordance with tradition of SSS.

Q. Pls be clear and specific. Would you beat your chest and say you are a good investigator.

Ans. I am a good investigator even though still undergoing training.

Q. You said you have nothing to say about the second Defendant Onwudiwe.

Ans. Yes. I have nothing to say about the second Defendant.

Q. You said you cautioned the first Defendant.

Ans. I did not say that. What I said that he should ask me what he does not understand.

Q. Is that your usual practice?

Ans. Yes.

Q. You stated from reading the Statement of first Defendant that he was being given money by IPOB to give to widows of slain IPOB demonstrators.

And. Yes.

Q. Am I right to put it to you that such group that gives money to widows is not an illegal group but a philanthropic group.

LABARAN Objected; the Court directed IFERE to reframe the Question …

Q. In your opinion, would you say a group that donates money to poor widows is a bad or illegal group.

Ana. No answer.

Q. Let me put it this way, when First Defendant was arrested was IPOB an illegal group. Or when did IPOB become an illegal group.

And. No. IPOB became illegal group in 2017 but I don’t remember the exact date. It is the purpose of the group that is bad … ** Whereupon the Court interrupted the Witness and cautioned him that he has answered the Question and that the Conclusion he’s attempting to draw is for the Court, not him **



Q. I would be right to say that the only role you played in this case is to take down the statement of the first Defendant.

Ans. Yes.

Q. Are you aware that the first Defendant was granted bail by FHC Uyo.

Ans. I am not aware.

Q. Would I be right also to say that you don’t know any single thing about Madubugwu.

Ans. Yes.

Q. Now, you asked the first Defendant what the purpose of IPOB is. Am I correct.

Ans. No.

Q. Let’s go over what you did in your office. You told this court that first of all the first Defendant was brought to the head of your Department, and the head of your department handed the first Defendant over to you to go and take down his statement.

Ans. Yes.

Q. So, you didn’t tell the first Defendant the reason why he was arrested.

Ans. Yes. Because I was not the one that arrested him.

Q. In the course of your interaction, you didn’t tell him why he was arrested, rather the first Defendant was the one telling you why he was arrested.

Ans. I did not tell him why he was arrested.

Q. Did you have any Petition against the first Defendant or anything to show him that was the allegation against him.

Ans. No.

Q. Can you tell this court your rank.

Ans. I am a Senior Detective.

Q. What is your grade level in the civil service structure.

Ans. I am a level 12 officer.

Q. What is the model of the Transmitter.

Ans. I don’t know.

Q. After taking statement of first Defendant, what did you do with him.

Ans. I took him back to our head of department.

Q. And what happened.

Ans. I went back to my office.

Q. What grade level makes a head of Department.

Ans. I don’t know.



Q. You told the court that you have a team of investigators.

Ans. Yes.

Q. To investigate what or who or just Bright Chimezie.

Ans. Yes. To investigate his case.

Q. How many investigators.

Ans. I don’t know.

Q. As a human being, would you be happy to see these people sent to prison just to please your boss or your director or the AGF.

Ans. No. I believe in justice.

Q. Did you read the amended charges and the proof of evidence attached.

Ans. No.

Q. Did you read the statement of Mr David the fourth Defendant.

Ans. No.

Q. Are you aware that the FHC Uyo declared first Defendant detention illegal.

Ans. I am not aware.

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