Nnamdi Kanu files N100bn suit against FG over continued detention


Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), has sued the federal government seeking his unconditional release from detention.


Kanu has been in detention since he was brought back from Kenya on June 19, 2021.


The IPOB leader was subsequently re-arraigned on an amended 15-count charge.


On April 8, the judge struck out eight of the 15 counts in the charge. The remaining seven counts were later quashed by the court of appeal on October 13.


Delivering judgment in the appeal, a three-member panel of the appellate court led by Hanatu Sankey held that the federal government flouted the Terrorism Act in violation of international conventions and treaties, hence, breaching the rights of the respondent.


The court further held that having illegally and forcefully renditioned the appellant, the trial court is stripped of jurisdiction to continue to try Kanu.


However, the federal government is yet to release Kanu.


Instead, it filed an appeal before the supreme court to challenge the judgment.


It also filed an application seeking to stay the execution of the appellate court’s judgment.


But Kanu has filed a fresh suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1945/2022 and dated October 21, challenging his continued detention.


He is also asking for N100 billion as damages for the violation of his fundamental human rights.


Kanu has asked the court for “a declaration that the continued detention of the applicant by the respondents, from the 13th day of October 2022, till date, is illegal, unlawful, oppressive, unconscionable and unconstitutional as it violates the applicant’s fundamental rights to dignity of human persons, personal liberty and right to freedom of movement as guaranteed by Sections 34, 35, 36, 39, and 41 of the 1999 Constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria (as amended) 2011.


“An order of this honourable court directing the respondents to unconditionally release the applicants from their custody forthwith.


“An order of injunction restraining the respondents, their ages, privies, assigns or howsoever called, from further interfering with the Applicant’s rights, and/or dealing with the Applicant in a manner inimical to his fundamental rights guaranteed by the 1999 Constitution as amended, 2011.


“Compensatory and exemplary damages of N100,000,000,000.00 (One Hundred Billion Naira Only), against the respondents for the gross violation of the applicant’s fundamental rights to dignity of the human person, personal liberty and freedom of movement.”

Kanu also wants the court to issue an order “directing the respondents to tender an unreserved public apology to the applicant in two national dailies and any other forms of reparation that the honourable court may deem he to grant”.


The Federal Republic of Nigeria, the attorney-general of the federation (AGF), the Department of State Services (DSS) and its director-general are joined as defendants in the suit.

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