A civil rights group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has described as a monumental injustice the decision by President Muhammadu Buhari through his Justice minister, Abubakar Malami to use masked witnesses against Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and director of United Kingdom based Radio Biafra.
The Rights group has also criticised Justice Binta Murtallah Nyako for bragging that the Federal High Court room is her’s and therefore can do whatever or issue whatever order she deems appropriate. It posits that the presiding judge can’t go outside the provisions of the Constitution in reaching a determination of any prayer at any given stage of the subsisting matter because doing otherwise would be illegal and absolutely non-permissible by law.
HURIWA reminded Justice Binta Murtallah-Nyako that the global community is watching her proceedings even as generations yet unborn will judge her conducts and decisions which would have far -reaching implications in whatever legacies she intends to build.
It stressed that it is an unmitigated crime against natural law for the Federal High Court to have disregarded the constitutionally guaranteed human rights of the defendants to fair hearing and open trial just in a choreographed attempt to railroad the accused into prison.
The Rights group further stated that the ruling by the Federal High Court to shield the identities of witnesses who would testify against Kanu is reminiscent of kangaroo trial process used during the brutal dictatorships that held Nigerians in bondage for over four decades prior to 1999 when overwhelming global pressures forced the coup plotters to vacate political offices, restored political and democratic order.
“We totally condemn Justice Binta Murtallah Nyako for granting this awkward and unconstitutional prayers of President Muhammadu Buhari which will in the long run deny the defendants and the rest of the citizenry the right to witness an open, transparent, accountable and clean judicial process since the matter involving the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) versus Muhammadu Buhari’s ruling elite has since become a national phenomenon in which every citizen of Nigeria is keen to know how the entire scenarios are resolved. The plot to present masked witnesses is both anachronistic and antithetical to moral and ethical justice. This can only happen in banana republics or failed political entities whereby military might is right”. It said.