Court rejects Kanu’s request to wear Igbo attire

  • Our Correspondent


Daily Courier – Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) leader, Nnamdi Kanu, cannot wear the Igbo traditional attire “isi agu” to court, Justice Binta Nyako ruled yesterday.


She had asked Kanu to indicate the type of clothing he preferred to wear after a complaint by his lawyer.


The IPOB leader said: “I want to wear the clothes of my people, ‘isi agu’.”


But the judge refused to grant the request.


It was at the hearing on Kanu’s applications in his treasonable felony case at the Federal High Court in Abuja.


The judge will rule on April 8 on Kanu’s application to quash the terrorism charges against him.


Justice Nyako fixed the date after taking arguments on the motion.


The court, however, ordered the State Security Service (SSS) to grant Kanu access to his reading glasses.


Kanu’s lead counsel, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN) had, at the commencement of proceedings at 1.30pm, complained that the SSS failed to allow his client to change clothes despite an earlier order by the court.


He also accused the SSS, in whose custody Kanu is being kept, of failing to provide his client with his reading glasses.


The SAN claimed Kanu’s sight was threatened by his inability to use his reading glasses since he was re-arrested last June.


Ozekhome said: “My lord will still see the defendant in the same uniform which my lord warned against in the last proceedings.


“It will be recalled that they had on that day, alleged that he said that he preferred to wear the same cloth because it is a designer.


“However, since that time, the younger brother of the defendant, his lawyer and sister have gone three times with materials for him to change but they refused to collect them.


“So bad was it that (Ifeanyi) Ejiofor (another lawyer in the defence team) had to call the Director of Legal Services and complained to him.


“The Director told him that he would do something about it, that he would contact the Director of Operations to ensure that the order was carried out.


“But since then, nothing has been done. They have not allowed him to change his clothes.


“My lord, since 2015, his glasses were taken from him. The one he wore before his extraordinary rendition from Kenya was also taken from him.


“Till now, he does not have glasses to wear and his eyesight is deteriorating.


“My lord, we do not want the defendant to go blind, that is why we have decided to bring it to the attention of the court,” Ozekhome said.


Counsel for the prosecution, Shuaib Labaran, said the clothes brought by Kanu’s family had lion hearts drawn on them, adding that such designs offended their operating procedures of the SSS.


Kanu filed fresh applications challenging the competence of the amended 15-count charge filed against him.