As the hearing of the application began, David Kaswe, counsel to the Department of State Services (DSS), the prosecution, informed Justice John Tsoho of the federal high court, Abuja, that there was a possibility for witnesses to refuse testifying against Kanu, without protection.
Masked witnesses can’t testify against Kanu- Court
Justice John Tsoho of the federal high court, Abuja, has ruled against the application of the federal government to mask its witnesses in the trial of Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and director of Radio Biafra. Tsoho held that masking the witnesses would shield their demeanour from the court.
“There is no gain saying that demeanour of witnesses is very crucial in a trial,” he said. He also held that sufficient particulars had not been provided by the prosecution to show that the witnesses were being threatened. Tsoho stated that the Department of State Services (DSS) had already disclosed the names of its witnesses and addresses, indicating that they reside in Lagos, Enugu and Port Harcourt, away from the locality of Kanu.
“It is not correct therefore to assert that many of the witnesses come from the accused persons location,” he said.
However, he ruled that names and addresses of the witnesses would not be made public during the trial. He thereafter adjourn the case to March 7 and 11 for trial. Earlier on Friday, Kanu had opposed the application of the federal government to protect the identities of witnesses in his trial, describing them as masquerades.