After about two years in custody, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, breathed the air of freedom yesterday.
Nnamdi Kanu was on Friday evening released from the Kuje prison in Abuja after perfecting the bail conditions granted him on Tuesday April 25, 2017 by Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court sitting Abuja.
Kanu’s lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor confirmed that the IPOB leader had been released from the Kuje prison where he had been in detention.
Recalled that Justice Nyako, in her ruling granted the IPOB leader bail in the sum of N100 million and three sureties in like sum and that one of the sureties must be a highly respected person of Igbo extraction, such as a Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Another of the surety, the Judge held, must be a highly respected Jewish leader, while the third surety must be a person of integrity and a resident of Abuja.
She also said Kanu must depose to an affidavit that he will be available in court to face his trial and that he should deposit his International Passport with the court.
“I will need monthly report of the health condition of the 1st defendant (Kanu),” Justice Nyako stated and refused to grant the bail application of Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisifor, who are standing trial with Kanu.
She said Kanu had based his bail application on health grounds and added that, “I am of the view that it is only a living person that can appear in court for trial.”
“I hereby exercised my discretion to grant the first defendant (Kanu) bail and refused the bail application of his co-defendants,” the Judge said and added that Kanu’s health challenge cannot be handled by the medical facilities at the Kuje prison.
The Judge barred the IPOB leader from rallies, granting press interviews and must not stay in a crowd with more than ten people.
Perfecting the conditions for the bail yesterday, a Jewish Rabbi, Chief Immanuel Shalum Okabemadu, who arrived Abuja alongside Senator Enyinnaya Abaribe (Abia South) and a chartered accountant residing in Abuja, Tochukwu Uchendu, signed the 100 million bail bond as ordered by the court.
The Jewish religious leader was flown into Abuja from Port Harcourt on Wednesday, April 26 for the purpose of perfecting the bail condition of the IPOB leader.
The court had fixed July 11 and 12, 2017 to commence the trial of the IPOB leader and his co-defendants, who are standing trial on a five count charge bordering on treasonable felony and their alleged involvement in acts of terrorism.
The federal government accused Kanu and his co-defendants of conspiracy to broadcast materials intended to secede from the Federal Republic of Nigeria and create a Biafra state.
After meeting his bail condition, he was seen being driven out of the detention facility in a Sporting Utility Vehicle (SUV) by former Aviation Minister, Mr Osita Chidoka. Chidoka, in company of others like Senator Abaribe and a Jewish leader who stood surety for Kanu, had arrived the court earlier on Friday, to sign off all bail conditions already met, including the “akpakwulu danda” of a Jewish Rabbi.
Kanu’s lawyer though didn’t reveal the identity of those who stood as sureties for his client, but it has been reliably gathered that the Chairman of the Senate’s South East Caucus, Eyinnaya Abaribe stood in for Kanu.
Others are a Jewish priest, Immanuel Shalom, and an Abuja-based