An Abia State magistrate’s court sitting in Umuahia, yesterday, granted bail to five detained members of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB. They were each granted bail for N200,000 with a guarantor in the same amount.
The court, however, ordered that they be remanded in prison custody until their bail conditions were met. The five accused IPOB members were arraigned on two-count charge bordering on unlawful association and criminal conspiracy with Niger Delta Avengers, NDA. They were said to have been arrested last year at Arongwa in Osisioma council area of the state by operatives of the Department of State Services, DSS, while on their way from Abuja where they were said to have gone to visit their detained leader, Nnamdi Kanu, at Kuje prison, Abuja. Lawyer to the DSS told the court that the service got intelligence over the move initiated by the IPOB members that led to their arrest.
He tendered some text messages found in their mobile phones before the court. In his argument, counsel for IPOB members argued that his clients had the right of association as provided for in the 1999 constitution, pointing out that they were also at freedom to visit anybody anywhere in the country without any legal inhibition and urged the court to grant them bail.