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Nigeria's Boko Haram trials to be occupied behind closed doors

The decision was based on the need for confidentiality because of security issues that may come up during the trial.
Kano (Nigeria) (AFP) - Trials of Boko Haram suspects in Nigeria will take place behind closed doors with no media present, a justice ministry official with knowledge of the matter told AFP on Friday.
The justice ministry announced last week that the trials of more than 1,600 suspects were scheduled to begin from October 9.
It blamed delays in prosecution on poor investigation techniques such as lack of forensic evidence, "over-reliance on confession-based evidence" and logistical problems.
Human rights groups have criticised Nigeria's military for the arbitrary arrest of civilians and detention of suspects for lengthy periods of time without access to legal counsel.
The announcement that due process was finally to begin was given a cautious welcome but a ban on media access will likely raise concerns about transparency.
The trials will take place in military detention facilities in Kainji, Kogi state, and New Bussa, in Niger state, both in central Nigeria.
Hearings will also be held in the Borno state capital, Maiduguri, where Boko Haram was founded in 2002 and which has been at the epicentre of the long-running violence.
"Freedom of information demands that the media be allowed access to court trials because they represent the public which they keep informed," he said.

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