By Alex Enebeli
An Enugu Magistrate’s Court, presided over by Mr A.C Mbah remanded 15 persons at an Enugu correctional facility on Friday over their alleged membership of the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB).
The accused persons are Aloysius Okonkwo (67), John Ebuka (18), Ucheme Ebuka (19), Lilian Chizoba (42), Maureen Echetanze (63), Eucharia Otu (40), Ngozi Emmanuel (44) and Cletus Duruoha (55).
Others are Chibuzor Abara (64), Chijoke Nwankwo (43), Monday Azita (28), Ikechukwu Ani (55), Benedict Onunze (58) and Chinonso Ugwu (35).and Ndubuisi Nnamani (55).
They were arraigned on a four-count charge of conspiracy, treasonable felony and belonging to proscribed and unlawful organisations, (Biafra and IPOB) and in possession of Biafra materials.
When the charges were read to them in English and Igbo languages, the accused persons pleaded not guilty.
Magistrate Mbah who did not take their plea remanded them at the correctional facility pending advice from the Director of Public Prosecution.
Earlier, Prosecution Counsel, Mr Emmanuel Ajokwu told the court that the accused persons and others still at large conspired and committed treasonable felony on May 29 at Emene, Enugu East Council Area.
He said that they participated in activities of Biafra to dethrone Federal Government of Nigeria and install a Biafra government.
Ajokwu said that the accused persons were members of the proscribed IPOB, noting that Biafra insignia including banners, bangles and flags were found on them.
He added that they joined and participated in activities of IPOB, an organisation the Federal Government of Nigeria had proscribed as a terrorist group.
According to him, their actions are punishable under the Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (2004) and applicable in Enugu State.