YENAGOA – A Magistrate Court sitting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State Tuesday freed 44 detained members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) declaring a no-case submission on the three count charges of Conspiracy, Breach of Public Peace and Unlawful gathering filed against them by the Police.
The Magistrate court presided over by Penawei Mukoro before striking out the case, said that the prosecution was unable to establish a prima-facie case against them.
The detained members of the IPOB were arrested on 22nd October 2016 while meeting at a popular large lounge/bar at the Okaka suburb of Yenagoa by men of the JointTask Force code named Operation Delta Safe and handed over to the Police for prosecution.
Counsel to the arrested IPOB members had argued before the court a no case submission, describing the arrest and trial of the IPOB members as a deliberate attempt to intimidate and violate the fundamental rights of people to freedom of gathering.
Nwosu said the prosecution, the Nigerian Police, have failed to produce a credible witness to substantiate the three count charges against the IPOB members.
He said, “it is a case where there is serious intimidation. And the prosecution could not produce the credible witness.”
Delivering ruling yesterday on the case, the Presiding Magistrate, Magistrate Penawei Mukoro struck out the case on no case submission and discharge and acquit the accused IPOB members.
Magistrate Penawei Mukoro in her ruling held that all the accused persons have no case to answer as the prosecution was unable to make out a prima-facie case against them.
Publisher: Prince Richmond C. Amadi