Kanu’s Co-defendants in Alleged Treasonable Felony  Suit Get N10m Bail

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Alex Enumah in Abuja
Justice Binta Nyako of the Federal High Court, Abuja yesterday granted bail in the sum of N10 million each to the co-defendants of the leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.
The defendants –  Bright Chimezie; Chidiebere Onwudiwe; Benjamin Madubugwu and David Nwawuisi – are standing trial on all alleged treasonable felony preferred against them by the federal government.

Justice Nyako, in granting the fresh bail application of the defendants, also ordered that they provide two sureties each in like sum.
The bail, which should be in cash, is expected to be deposited in the court’s account.
Other conditions attached to the bail included an order preventing the defendants from granting any press interview or participating in any form of gathering or rally.

Justice Nyako further ordered the defendants to report to the Commissioners of Police in their respective states of residence every two weeks.
While Chimezie was ordered to report to the Commissioner of Police in Rivers State,  Onwudiwe and Nwawuisi are to report to the Commissioner of Police in Enugu State and Madubugwu to the Commissioner of Police in Anambra State.

Following the severance of their trial from that of Kanu, whose whereabouts remains unknown since last year, when his family home in Abia State was invaded by military personnel, the federal government re-arraigned them on a three-count amended charge of treasonable felony.
Consequently, the defendants through their counsel had asked the court to release them on bail.

They have maintained their innocence of the charge against them, adding that even the charges are bailable.
However, counsel to the federal government, Shuaibu Labaran, opposed their applications.
But delivering ruling on their applications, Justice Nyako, said the applications succeeded on health grounds and the number of years they had spent in detention.

Nyako stated that Chimezie had earlier been granted bail by the Federal High Court in Uyo in May 2017 but the Department of State Service (DSS), which was then holding him in custody refused to release him.
The court in addition said the defendants had spent an average of three years in custody when the maximum penalty for the offences they were alleged to have committed carries between five to seven years upon conviction.