Nnamdi Kanu, the detained leader of Indigenous People of Biafra, has sued the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Kenyan Government over alleged violation of his fundamental human rights by the two governments.
Kanu, through his lawyer, Aloy Ejimakor, filed the suit at the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, asking to be returned to the United Kingdom.
Ejimakor, in a statement on Monday, said the IPOB leader demanded accountability over his extradition to Nigeria from Kenya.
The statement partly read, “Jurisdiction lies with the Commission because Nigeria and Kenya are State Parties to the African Charter; and Nigeria even took a step further to domesticate the Charter, thus making it part of her municipal laws.
“Both countries also have extradition laws that prohibit this sort of reprehensible conduct that saw Kanu to Nigeria.
“More particularly, extraordinary rendition is expressly prohibited under the African Charter, where It provides in pertinent part that “A State may not transfer (e.g. deport, expel, remove, extradite) an individual to the custody of another State unless it is prescribed by law and in accordance with due process and other international human rights obligations. Extraordinary rendition, or any other transfer, without due process, is prohibited”.
“A victim of extraordinary rendition is entitled to remedies mandated by the Charter.
“Therefore, among many other reliefs, I requested that Kanu be restored to his state of being before the rendition, which state of being was that he travelled to Kenya on his British passport and was duly admitted as such and as a free man.
“Further, that no valid territorial jurisdiction can issue from an act of extraordinary rendition because Kanu is, technically speaking, still in Kenya.
“And that the Nigerian bench warrant standing against Kanu is, in the absence of any successful extradition proceedings in Kenya, invalid to arrest in Kenya.
“I also requested the Commission to adopt other urgent measures as the Commission sees fit in the circumstances to protect Nnamdi Kanu in the interim. A fact-finding visitation to Nigeria is also in reckoning.”
Abubakar Malami, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, had in a press briefing in Abuja on June 29, 2021, announced that the IPOB leader was arrested in a foreign country and extradited to Nigeria.
He was later re-arraigned before Justice Binta Nyako on terrorism-related charges and has since been remanded in the custody of the Department of State Services in Abuja.
But at the resumption of his trial on Monday, the DSS failed to produce Kanu in court, citing problems of logistics.