The National Coalition Against Terrorism, a group that fights against terrorism in Nigeria, has appealed to the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Olukayode Ariwoola, to direct election petition tribunals in the South-East region to deliver their verdicts electronically.
According to The PUNCH, the group made this appeal on Monday in Abuja, citing the increasing violence, killings and secessionist agenda of the Indigenous People of Biafra, a separatist group that wants to break away from Nigeria.
The group also noted that IPOB had warned the people of the South-East not to celebrate the nation’s Independence Day anniversary on October 1, threatening that “Anyone seen celebrating the Nigerian flag Independence in Biafra land will regret his or her life.”
The National Coordinator of the National Coalition Against Terrorism, Terrence Kuanum, who spoke at a press conference, urged Ariwoola to emulate the success of Kano and Kaduna judgments, which were conducted through Zoom technology, to ensure the safety of tribunal judges.
Kuanum said they were particularly concerned about the Abia State Election Petitions Tribunal, which would be held in the same zone where some IPOB leaders allegedly reside.
He said, “We are all aware of several threats to lives and property in the South-East over the activities of IPOB and the unknown gunmen which has resulted in so many loss of life and properties.
“In the last 10 years, we have witnessed massive destruction of police stations; our police personnel no longer go to work because their lives are consistently under threat and our prison facilities have not also been spared by the activities of these terrorists. Markets have been on several times closed in the South-East at the directive of these terrorist groups.
“We, therefore, request that the Chief Judge of the Federation immediately directs all tribunal judgments in the South-East to deliver their judgments through electronic means to save the judges involved in this patriotic assignment from coming under threat or even losing their lives.
“Further risking the life of these judges will bring their rulings in disrepute knowing full well that they are under threat and might have delivered their judgment under duress to save their lives.”