Principal witness, Sen Laah’s absence stalls Kaduna Commissioner, journalist’s court case

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The legal battle between the Epoch Times New York, Kaduna correspondent, Mr Luka Binniyat, and the Commissioner of Internal Security and Home Affairs Kaduna State, Mr Samuel Aruwan, has been adjourned to the second week of August following the inability of the prosecution’s principal witness, Senator Danjuma La’ah, to appear at the federal high court sitting in the state on Tuesday.

Binniyat, who is also the spokesman of the Southern Kaduna People’s Union (SOKAPU) is being charged under the cyber crimes act for cyberstalking.

When the case came up on Tuesday for the continuation of hearing, the prosecution could not produce its last witness in court, the matter, therefore, was adjourned to the second week of August 2022, by the presiding judge, Justice Mohammed Garba.

Counsels to the defendant, Ehizogie Fidelis Imadojemu and Emmanuel Kolawole Atteh, while speaking to newsmen at the end of the session, explained that the parties involved in the prosecution of Binniyat include Aruwan, the state and the federal government of Nigeria.

According to the counsels, “The prosecution has alluded to the fact that they may be forced to close their case if the last witness does not show up. So if they do, they’ll at that point, decide our next step in defense.”

They added that the prosecution is the state, Attorney General of Kaduna State, explaining that although the party is the Federal Republic of Nigeria, the nominal complainant actually is Aruwan.

Binniyat had earlier told newsmen that he has been prosecuted by Aruwan over a story he reported some time in 2021 in Epoch Times New York, alleging that the story jeopardized the security of himself and his family.

According to the defendant, all the six trials he is going through are directly connected with the stories about Southern Kaduna, where he alleged that genocide was carried out on them by armed Fulani herdsmen.

He added that this is the sixth judge he is facing under this administration, stressing that he has been in prison six times, in various notorious police detention centres including CID Gabsawa police station.

He lamented, “I’ve continuously been on trial since this government came into office in 2016 and a total of half a year spent in prison.”

He alleged that he is no longer secure and all the time worried about the security of himself and his family too.

The defendant explained that even though cyberstalking is a federal government law, Aruwan is the complainant and one who is seeking his imprisonment.

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