A bird dancing on the pathway must be dancing to a rhythmic drumbeat sound coming from a surrounding bush. After all, Ifeajuna as a name and by all intents and purposes projects a treacherous personality and betrayal exemplary.
Biafra Liberation is fought at different levels and times, but one common phenomenon underlying each of these battles is that Biafra wins at the end of the contest no matter who is involved on the other side. Victory will eventually go to Biafra and for Biafrans.
It is no longer news that A Federal High Court in Abuja recently denied bail to the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra and founder/Director of Radio Biafra, Nnamdi Kanu.
Kanu – a prison of conscience is being prosecuted for a treasonable felony and other offenses bordering on his agitation for the Republic of Biafra in line with the provisions of the United Nations Charter on Rights of the Indigenous People to Self-Determination.
However, Justice John Tsoho (the presiding Judge) in rejecting the accused person’s bail application on Friday held that he was not entitled to bail as he failed to show that he would not continue to commit the alleged crime for which he was being prosecuted. Impliedly, Nnamdi has been found guilty of the crime before the trial). At the background, a lot has happened, Nnamdi has been at the receiving end and have to take a decisive action to bring to end the ugly turn before it goes out of control.
As a native proverb says, “the one that was contracted to chase away invading spirits somehow joined the spirits in tormenting their victim.” Barrister Vincent Obetta’s stroke and style in the handling of Director Nnamdi Kanu’s case could be likened and simply described as a case of “tail wagging the dog” and not the other way round. Obetta characteristically told the Director Nnamdi Kanu that he (Obetta) is in charge of him and his case. Not only that he said so, but he also acted out and stoutly advanced his selfish plans by crafting networks which he used to sustain and suppress Director and to attain or promote his economic gains and secure cheap popularity.
Typical of Obetta, while Director was in the dungeon of the Directorate of State Security (DSS), he allegedly instructed DSS not to allow anybody to visit Director. Meanwhile, he (Obetta) refused abruptly to update both the lawful spouse of the Director Nnamdi Kanu and the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) on the progress of a case he was assigned to handle. As if that was not enough, Obetta in deviance told the entire world repeatedly at different times that Mazi Nnamdi Kanu was being treated to the finest of hospitality as someone in a presidential hotel. That he is well and good and that no one should worry about him. This was against the fact that Nnamdi was abused and tortured physically and psychologically, denied medical attention and visits from his acquaintances.
In effect and deductively, Obetta can be said to be doing the biddings of his masters – DSS and not that of his supposed client. Evidently, Obetta believed in his wild imagination that Nnamdi Kanu’s case will be delayed hence held indefinitely. No thanks to his approach to the case. Obetta built a wall against the Director such that no one was able to reach Director to inform him of those things he (Obetta) never intended disclosing to him. Hence, Director Nnamdi Kanu lived only at Obetta’s mercies and messes. Consequently, Obetta had a temporary overall control of affairs which he utilized in orchestrating cracks and gaps which warmed the opportunities that helped the DSS flaunt the directives and orders of a competent court.
Come to think of it, the pioneer Barrister that handled Director’s case was Gabriel Egbuna, and he did excellently well in not only using his initiatives in organizing and leading the defense counsels professionally, he argued the case brilliantly to secure the very first ever bail on this case. Barrister Egbuna also perfected the bail bond. The swift progression of the case nosedived immediately Obetta took over from Barrister Egbuna. As the then lead counsel, he quickly changed the whole ball game and started making things difficult even for himself and Egbuna, who was then asked to allow Obetta to join and lead in the case.
It did not occur to us that Obetta’s assumption as the lead counsel was the genesis of everything that will go wrong which eventually and adversely impacted this case. Amongst the first signals was the point where indeed a lead attorney was being told to file requisite forms 48 and 49 which will compel and help the court open up a case of default or contempt of court against the DSS. Shockingly but true, Obetta repeatedly refused initially to act on time in getting the DSS obey an apparent order of the court. Rather he chooses to call Barrister Egbuna all sort of unprintable names and made uncomplimentary remarks about him simply for Egbuna’s stand that these forms so required by the court must be filed as and when due. Of course, when Obetta was asked to be assisted in meeting up with all the processes and procedures of the court, he turned down the offer. While on the other hand, alleging that people have the intention to interfere with “his case files” (which was originally opened and maintained by Barrister Egbuna) on Director.
Rather than Obetta to brief or update Director’s spouse or IPOB, he went as far as doing that to parties whom he considered soft targets of his machination. That again was his dreamed opportunity to shore up his image as a “classic” defense attorney and celebrity in the making whereas often than not, he is on the media to blatantly lie to the public and to make false claims. He told the world that he was doing a charitable legal defense work – on pro bono. He failed to explain other ways he has enriched himself. Obetta did not stop at that; he used his prime position to initiate and contract different lawyers and two Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) without due consultation and approval. Even he acted against the simple advice of his client at some point to be part of the defense counsel but never to lead it again. Obetta single-handedly incurred whopping debt sums of the amount for his client in getting these paid colleagues of his to join him in a case he is allegedly doing “free-of-charge, only expenses paid for.”
The level of shenanigan employed and witnessed led to things falling apart amongst Director’s acquaintances. Obetta attempted to create a feud between the families – IPOB and that of the Director. He irked the spouse of the Director by lying to her. He went ahead to blank her off on any updates, plans and developments regarding the case notwithstanding her rights to intervene with regards to a legal representative being the acknowledged next-of-kin of the Director.
Obetta’s penchant for troubled atmosphere and controversy was equally noticed at different press briefings as he purportedly gave an account of court proceedings outcome to the media after sessions and at other times when he issued press releases. It is incisive to note that Obetta made some blunder statements and indictments against his client by asserting that he (Obetta) “is not saying his client did not commit any offense…” In a yet another of his claims, he opined that Director Nnamdi Kanu did apologize to Nigeria Government, Igbo elders and so on. Again, another instance and in contrast, he declined and modified his earlier position because his supposed client did not make a formal apology but did so in his statement to the DSS. Obetta used his plum position to make cronies that yielded to cash calls in the bid to support the case depending on the divides respectively.
Suffice it to say that the colossal and collateral damage caused by Obetta and his cohorts in this Director’s case is yet to be fully evaluated as many have disclosed how they were secretly asked to part with their resources in millions to facilitate this case relatively to who was involved or targeted.
Besides, the way and manner Barrister Obetta administratively conducted and carried on with the case, made it impossible to provide the parties concerned either the spouse of the Director, the extended family or the IPOB officials with any significant document of what has taken place and the plans for the foreseeable future of the case. The hard facts remain that Obetta saw the opportunity as a unique one to get rich quick and fame as well. Nevertheless, he lost sight of spectators who have watched with deep concern the criticism, the attack, assault and unpleasant comments hurled against both the Director, his wife, the IPOB family and indeed, against the sensitivity and sensibility of good friends and supporters of the Director as well as Biafra restoration struggle in general.
Now we know, and events have revealed the truth that where there’s smoke, there’s fire. Everything that Obetta did was well planned and perpetrated to the detriment of the case but for his benefits which manifested even while the brilliant submission to move Director to prison was put together by the new legal team, Obetta was tacitly working against it. Needlessly mentioning that all efforts made by the DSS to ensure that Nnamdi Kanu still remains in their custody while the trial last was effectively rebuffed by the strategic advocacy of the Learned Silk. Unarguably, it was a superlative outing and a powerful punch on Obetta and his cohorts. Director was particularly please by their performance. Henceforth, his mind was made on the new defense team to continue with his case and to be led by the able High-Chief Chuks Muoma SAN and Barrister Ifeanyi Ejiofor. In addition, Director immediately was reachable directly from prison and the entire nonsense hullabaloo stopped.
It is instructive to know that “the fly that refuses to listen to simple advice will inadvertently get buried along with the corpse.” The deflation of Obetta’s effrontery came after series of his consistent inconsistencies; not even when Director personally agreed with Obetta to give the new legal team a chance to handle the case going forward as the lead defense counsel. He felt bad as he could not figure out how suddenly his ascension to “heavenly fame” could crash overnight. On his own initiatives, he planned and brought in a SAN that forcefully took over the defense lead counsel on January 25, 2016. This covetous coup d’état attitude did invoke the very anger and action of the Director to call off Obetta’s blunder and bring his actions and deceptions to a final halt.
Certainly, the last strict instruction and final test which Obetta copiously failed led to the disengagement letter that showed him the way out – the last straw that broke the camel’s back. Obetta’s client unceremoniously discharged him through a written communication to the sitting Judge on a matter bordering on his chosen defense lead counsel. Notwithstanding the obvious, Obetta went away with the case file and not only refused handing over the case file, he went on to address the media on the hot issue but claimed that he had won cases for the Director, and that he is now (then) along with his personally selected team withdrawing from the case. But it is on record that Barrister Vincent Obetta never for once argued in court rather he shines in the media on someone else’s fruit of labour. Besides, the Magistrate court ruling was done by others and not him. Let’s give honour to whom honour is due. What a shame and outright disgrace of “people who reap what they never sowed.” Obetta did not adduce any reasonable reason for his or their withdrawal from the case due to the fact that he has so much up his sleeves.
Keen observers were at a loss regarding the statement Obetta made without the explicit logic of what informed their withdrawal. Eventually, people realize that there are more than meet the eyes. Nevertheless, Obetta stands discharged by Director Nnamdi Kanu and a disappointment to Director’s spouse (Mrs. Uchechi Kanu), the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and many rabid followers of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.
Although, Director was denied bail on January 29, 2016, Obetta’s sack from his defense counsel paved way for proper articulated legal battle against Nigeria’s DSS who are certified enemies of rule of law, civility and common sense decorum. The DSS and Nigerian government have no regards or respect for human dignity and United Nations Charters on Human Rights. The new legal team of Director Nnamdi Kanu is battle-ready against the DSS and Nigerian government and victory shall be that of the legal team. For Obetta and company, it is good riddance of bad rubbish!!!