Appeal Court Frustrate Group's Attempt to Exonerate Saro-Wiwa, Others

An Ogoni group, the Conscience of Ogoni People have declared that they would approach the Supreme Court  for justice over the murder of their son and environmental activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa, who was murdered in 1995, by the military junta.

The decision was on the heels of Wednesday’s  Court of Appeal’s judgement in Port Harcourt,  Rivers State,  that dismissed the case of Chief Gani Topba,  the leader of a pan-Ogoni group,  Conscience of Ogoni People (COP), seeking the court to set aside the  judgement of a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt,  that struck out the case of fundamental human rights.

Topba stated: “We are heading to the Supreme Court. In a country where the rights of the minority can be denied at every level, it gives serious concern. Already, I knew what the judgement of today would look like because I predicted what would happen.

“You know, the judgement was reserved for the first time. After three months, nothing happened. It was reserved again.  This was also after three months.  As the case may be,  I have hope in the Supreme Court of Nigeria.  They would do justice to it.

He insisted that the late environmental activist was unjustly killed, and, therefore, the judgement used in killing should be set aside.

“We are not claiming damage. If anybody is claiming damage on the issue of Ken Saro-Wiwa,  how much can anyone pay that can bring back his life?  So,  we do not believe in anything compensation.

“What we believe in is,  his image should be cleared.  If you look at the image of late M. K. O. Abiola,  the government of Nigeria has cleared his image and honoured him.  It was the same time Saro-Wiwa was killed.

“The international community said the killing of Ken Saro-Wiwa was a judicial murder. So, Ogoni people are waiting,  the international community is waiting to see the decision of Nigeria to do the right thing.  And I know with the leadership of the Supreme Court,  we will get justice”,  he stated.

Earlier, Justice Cordelia Jombo-Ofo struck out the appeal filed fundamental human rights appeal by leader of COP for lack of merit.

She noted, “The appellant was merely out in the matter to exercise his academic prowess and failed to show the court the dispute between him and the defendant.

“It is not the function or duty of the court to engage in academic exercise or speculation, the court was established to determine live issues”,  the judge declared.

Credit: The Sun