Justice John Tsoho of Federal High Court, Abuja has adjourned hearing in the trial of Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB and two others till September 26, following fresh application filed by the defendants asking him to disqualify himself from continuing hearing of the case.
Kanu and his co- accused alleged that the Judge had in the course of a ruling he delivered on an application on 26 April expressed serious prejudice against a member of the defence team.
The defence team had subsequently petitioned National Judicial Commission, NJC complaining of the conduct of the Judge.
The defendant therefore argued that with the ongoing probe of the Judge by NJC, his impartiality in the hearing of the case can no longer be guaranteed.
The defendants said since the allegation of bias is currently subject of scrutiny by the NJC, there is no guarantee that the Judge will be fair if he continue to preside over the case.
They therefore argued that the best interest of justice will be served if the matter is transferred to an impartial arbiter for adjudication.
Justice Tsoho subsequently adjourned the trial to enable the defence and prosecution lawyers study the application and respond to it.
However, before the case was adjourned, there was a mild drama as another counsel, Amobi Nzelu announced appearance for the second defendant in the case, Benjamin Madubugwu.
Following the announcement, Chuks Muoma (SAN) had threatened to withdraw from the trial, describing the sudden introduction of the new counsel as an affront to him.
He was however pacified by Nzelu who assured him that it was not his intention to snatch his client.