The four top members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) charged together with IPOB leader, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and detained at Kuje prison, Abuja since 2015 have been released.
The defendants are Chidiebere Onwudiwe, Bright Chimezie, David Nwawusi, and Benjamin Madubugwu, who were charged with offenses relating to “preparations to secede from Nigeria” and detained without bond since 2015.
They left the prison gates around 6pm, Thursday evening (July 5, 2018) in company of Barrister Aloy Ejimakor who led a team of IPOB lawyers to the prison facility to ensure that the release order was carried through. The other lawyers on the team are PA Ejiofor, Max Opara, Prince Mandela and Chukwudi Igwe.
The release was sequel to the lawyers meeting all the bail terms, particularly the cash bond of Five Million Naira each, making it a total of Twenty Million for all four accused persons.
The cash bond was paid yesterday by bank draft to the Registrar of the Federal High Court in Abuja. It was upon meeting this final but difficult term that the release order was finally signed by Justice Binta Murtala-Nyako.
This correspondent gathered that posting the initial cash bond of Forty Million Naira (Ten Million each) was almost impossible, which prompted the lawyers to successfully apply for the reduction of the amount to Twenty Million Naira.
The next hearing date for their trial is set for 14th November, 2018; and it is expected that the Judge will first deal with the pending objections to her jurisdiction before taking any further step in the trial.
It was gathered that all four defendants left Abuja yesterday by night bus to their various homes in Southeast.