Court sentences independence day bomb suspect to life
ABUJA (AFP) – An Abuja court on Friday sentenced to life in prison a man convicted in connection with the twin bombings in the capital Abuja near independence day commemorations in 2010 that killed 12 people.
Edmund Ebiware was accused of having knowledge of the planned attack beforehand and failing to report it. His sentence comes days after the alleged mastermind, Henry Okah, was convicted in South Africa on terrorism charges.
Federal High Court Justice Gabriel Kolawole ruled that Ebiware “had foreknowledge that Mr Henry Okah was planning an attack against the government and to strike and cause mayhem in Nigeria.”
Ebiware will be eligible for parole after 32 years in prison.
The 2010 bombing shocked the country, occurring a short distance away from where foreign heads of state and dignitaries had gathered for celebrations marking 50 years of Nigerian independence.
Okah was accused of being a key figure in MEND, the most prominent militant group in the oil-producing Niger Delta region.
He holds permanent residence in South Africa and was tried there, with a court convicting him on Monday of 13 terrorism charges. He faces a minimum term of life in prison when the court sentences him by February 1.
Three other suspects were also charged in Nigeria over the bombing, including Henry Okah’s brother Charles Okah, who along with a third suspect are awaiting trail, while the fourth suspect died in prison.