FACT CHECK: Did Peter Obi lie when he said court granted Nnamdi Kanu bail?

Peter obi

Peter obi

By Kazeem Ugbodaga

On Saturday, 29 June, 2024, a former presidential candidate of the Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi accused the government of President Bola Tinubu of not abiding by due process in the detainment of leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu.

Obi said in Onitsha, Anambra State that despite the court granting Kanu bail, the Federal Government had continued to hold him in detention in flagrant violation of court’s order.

According to Obi, “I don’t see any reason for his (Kanu) continuous detention, especially as the courts have granted him bail. The government must obey the court. We are in a democracy, and we should not be doing things that are arbitrary and not within the law.

“The rule of law is an intricate asset that we must cherish and live with. I use this opportunity to plead with the Federal Government to ensure that all those who are in similar conditions are released and discussed.”

How true is Peter Obi’s assertion?

Is the comment by Obi that Kanu had been granted bail and that he was being detained by the Tinubu’s government unjustly true?

What we know so far is that the Federal High Court in Abuja on 19 March, 2024, rejected the bail application by Kanu and the trial judge, Justice Binta Nyako, however, granted an accelerated hearing instead.

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Alloy Ejimakor, Kanu’s lawyer had stated that the IPOB leader’s health condition was deteriorating, adding that his continued detention by the DSS was a threat to his life.

Checks revealed that the last time Kanu was granted bail on health grounds was on 25 April, 2017, after spending 18 months in detention but he fled the country after an invasion of his residence by the military in September 2017.

Also, on 23 January, 2024, the Supreme Court released the Certified True Copy of the judgment on the suit between the Federal Government and Kanu. The apex court had on December 15, 2023, set aside a judgment by the lower court that dismissed the terrorism charges against Kanu.

The appeal court had exonerated Kanu following an infringement on his fundamental human rights by the Federal Government, but the Supreme Court, although berated the actions of the government, ruled that Kanu must continue his trial.

VERDICT: From our findings, there was nowhere any court in Nigeria granted Kanu bail as stated by Peter Obi apart from the 2017 bail granted him when he fled Nigeria.

Obi, therefore, lied that the court granted Kanu bail and also lied when he said the government of President Bola Tinubu was unjustly detaining Obi when he had already been granted bail.

In summary Peter Obi lied in his comment to Nigerians. Kanu was never granted bail.


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