The Indigenous people of Biafra approached a Federal High Court on Wednesday through their lawyer Ifeanyi Ejiofor, seeking the reversal of court proscription order.
The verdict by the Federal High court in Abuja on Wednesday by the Acting chief judge Abdu Kafarati to an ex-parte motion filed by the Attorney -General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN) had outlawed the indigenous group saying their activities constituted an “act of terrorism.”
The body led by Nnamdi Kanu had been in a protracted tussle with the state which had led to President Muhammad Buhari ordering the Nigerian troops into Abia state last week.
In the heat of the tussle, the Senate President Bukola Saraki on Monday declared the pronouncements of the Federal high court which tagged IPOB a terrorist group null and void.
IPOB in a counter application filed by Ifeanyi Ejiofor, stated that the proscription order was unconstitutional, and also without a fair hearing, thereafter pleaded with the court to vacate the order on grounds that the group was non-violent.
The IPOB application is based on the following grounds:
“That the ex-parte order made on the 20th day of September 2017, by this honourable court was made without jurisdiction, as the order was granted against an entity unknown to law.
“That there is a clear suppression and misrepresentation of facts in the attorney-general affidavit evidence, pursuance to which the order was granted.
“That the order is unconstitutional, as it was made in clear violation of the constitutionally guaranteed right of the Indigenous People of Biafra to self-determination, Article 20(1) of the Africa Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, now domesticated into our Law under (Ratification and Enforcement Act) (Cap 10) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990, right to fair hearing, right to freedom of expression, and the press and rights to peaceful assembly and association, clearly provided for under sections 36, 39 and 40 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as (Amended) 2011.
“That a declaratory order cannot be made pursuant to an ex-parte application, without hearing from the party against whom the order was made.
“The Indigenous People of Biafra who are majorly of Igbo extraction, have no history of violence in the exercise of their right to self-determination.
“The Indigenous People of Biafra does not carry arms and has no history of arm struggle in the exercise of their constitutionally guaranteed rights to self-determination.”