From Godwin Tsa, Abuja
A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has given legal backing to the executive order of the Federal Government proscribing the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its activities.
Before departing for the 72nd United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, President Muhammadu Buhari signed the Presidential Proclamation proscribing the activities of the pro-Biafra group over alleged acts of terrorism.
After hearing in chambers, an exparte application filed by the Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), the acting Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Abdu Kafarati, granted the order proscribing the group on yesterday.
Justice Kafarati who took over from Justice Ibrahim Auta, last Saturday, granted the following orders:
* An order of the court declaring that the activities of the respondent (Indigenous People of Biafra) in any part of Nigeria, especially in the South-East and South-South region of Nigeria amount to acts of terrorism and illegality.
*An order proscribing the existence of the respondent (IPOB) either in groups or as an individual by whatever names they are called and publishing same in the official gazette and two national dailies.
*An order restraining any person or group of persons from participating in any format pertaining in any manner whatever in any format of activities involving or concerning the prosecution of the collective intent
The consequence of the proscription of the IPOB by the Court is that membership of the group attracts 20 years imprisonment since it is now a terrorist organisation as stated by the law of the land.
The order will subsist until and except it is set aside by counsel to the affected parties. (The Sun)