The Federal Government of Nigeria has gazetted the order of the Federal High Court of Nigeria in Abuja proscribing and declaring that the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as a terrorist organisation.
The gazetting was part of the requirements imposed on the Federal Government by the court to finalise the prescription of the Indigenous People of Biafra.
Having gazetted the order, the Federal government of Nigeria is further set to publish it in two national dailies to complete the process.
The Acting Chief Judge of the Federal High Court, Justice Abdu Kafarati, on September 20, issued the proscription order based on an ex parte application by the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Mr Abubakar Malami.
However, IPOB, through its lawyer, Mr Ifeanyi Ejiofor, filed a motion before the same court two days after, seeking the nullification of the said order, citing lack of jurisdiction, among other grounds.
The federal government of Nigeria through the Federal Ministry of Justice is set to notify banks, Nigerian Embassies abroad and foreign missions operating in Nigeria on the move by the federal government.
A five-page document to that effect was reportedly printed and published by the Federal Government Printer in Lagos on September 20, 2017. The document was signed by the AGF.
It is titled, ‘Terrorism (Prevention) (Proscription Order) Notice, 2017’ and contained in Volume 104 of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette.
The document warned Nigerians that any person or group of persons participating in the activities of the group “in any manner”, would be violating the provisions of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act, 2011 as amended in 2013 and would be liable to be prosecuted.
“NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that by the Order of the Federal High Court, Abuja, in suit No. FHC/ABJ/CS/871/2017, dated September 20, 2017 as per the schedule to this Notice, the activities of the Indigenous People of Biafra are declared to be terrorism and illegal in any part of Nigeria, especially in the South-East and South-South regions of Nigeria as proscribed, pursuant to Section 2 of the Terrorism (Prevention)Act, 2011 (as mended).
“Consequently, the general public is hereby warned that any person or group of persons participating in any manner whatsoever in any form of activities involving or concerning the prosecution of the collective intentions or otherwise of the said groups will be violating the provisions of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act, 2011 (as amended) and liable to prosecution.
“This Notice shall be cited as the Terrorism (Prevention) (Proscription Order) Notice, 2017,” it read in part.
Meanwhile, IPOB, through its attorney, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, had, barely 48 hours after the court’s proscription order was issued, filed a motion on September 22 before the same court, seeking the nullification of the said order for being made by the court without jurisdiction, among other alleged defects.