An Abuja Division of the Federal High Court has denied requests made by the pro-Biafra group, Indigenous People Of Biafra, IPOB, seeking the nullification of the proscription order made against the group on September 20.
The IPOB members had approached the court through its legal counsel, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, demanding that the order proscribing the group be lifted adding that the order is in violation of its fundamental rights to fair hearing and freedom of assembly.
The court, presided over by Justice Abdul Kafarati however stated that the basic instrument in the particular ex parte motion was the approval of the Nigerian president which was stated to have been given in the application brought by the Attorney General of the Federation.
The court proceeded to say that “the application brought by the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation ex-parte was properly brought”.
The court further ordered the IPOB to pay the sum of N500,000 in damages based on the allegation of abuse of its members as claimed by its lawyers.
In reaction to the ruling, the Ohaneze Ndigbo, the apex Igbo socio-cultural group, has condemned the ruling delivered by the Abuja High Court.
The group in a statement issued through Nnia Nwodo, the President General of Ohaneze, said; “It is unfortunate that our courts are allowing themselves to be used for unlawful and political ends. IPOB has done nothing to qualify, as defined by international standards, to be called a terrorist organization.
“Sadly The Federal Attorney General in his parochialism, unmitigated bias and calumny has not found it necessary to classify The Fulani herdsmen as terrorists inspite of their classification by the Global Terrorist Index as the fourth deadliest terrorist organization in the world. Ohaneze frowns at this nepotism, this denigration of our judiciary and this stigmatization of our children.”