DSS Mismanaging Nnamdi Kanu’s Case By Denying Him Access to Lawyers – HURIWA
Calls for An End To killings In South East
Civil rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), on Thursday, knocked the Department of State Services for mismanaging the case of Nnamdi Kanu by flagrantly denying access to his lawyers, contrary to court orders.
HURIWA is therefore urging the hierarchy of the Department of State Services to de-escalate the tensions in the South East of Nigeria by adhering strictly to the rules of engagement and respect decisions of the competent court of law since the judicial powers of the Federation is domiciled within the court system in line with section 6 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria of 1999 as amended.
Besides, HURIWA is appealing passionately to President Muhammadu Buhari to release the detained leader of the Indigenous Peoples of Biafra(IPOB) Mazi Nnamdi Kanu and set up a proper mechanism for an all out negotiation and dialogues on ways to restore peace, security and stability to the South East of Nigeria. The Rights group said posterity will be eternally appreciative of President Muhammadu Buhari should he now act as a real statesman and a patriot by unconditionally granting pardon to all political detainees including members and the leaders of Indigenous People of Biafra and Yoruba Nation agitators now before the Presidential primary elections of political parties in April this year.
HURIWA, in a statement by its National Coordinator, Emmanuel Onwubiko, said the actions of the secret police against the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra show blatant disregard to the judiciary by the DSS.
According to one of Kanu’s lawyer, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, the DSS has four times in two weeks barred Kanu’s lawyers led by Chief Mike Ozekhome from meeting him in custody.
Ejiofor said on Monday that all efforts by the lawyers to meet Kanu were resisted as the secret police “insisted that our request ran contrary to their procedure and guidelines.”
HURIWA wondered whether the lawyers or the DSS operatives were the ones acting in contravention of the order of Justice Binta Nyako of a Federal High Court in Abuja that Kanu have access to his lawyers twice a week – Mondays and Thursdays.
HURIWA therefore supports Ejiofor that appropriate legal actions should be earnestly taken to seek redress in court for the flagrant violations of court orders by the DSS.
HURIWA’s Onwubiko condemned the lawlessness and highhandedness of the secret police since the abduction of Kanu from Kenya in June 2021.
He said, “The Federal government is grossly mismanaging the Nnamdi Kanu’s matter. First and foremost, the trial is heavily politicised. The Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN) on many occasions went to the media to heap allegations upon allegations against Nnamdi Kanu all in his attempt to prejudge and preempt the determination of the matter. That for one is unprofessional and prejudicial. The basic principles of rule of law, presumption of innocence and basic human rights of accused person have been thrown to the dogs all because President Muhammadu Buhari had accused Kanu of disrespect.
“The lawlessness and impudence of the secret police could be traced back to 2017 when Kanu was first detained. Till date, the DSS has totally failed to respect the court in many occasions and even told the Justice Nyako that Isi Agu traditional wear of the Igbo offends the so called in-house rules of the DSS as if the Igbo ethnic nationality is officially a discriminated group whereas the DSS operatives wear Hausa Babanriga and other ethnic wears. In fact, eyewitnesses said the DSS dressed like herbalists to raid Sunday Igboho’s house in July 2021.
“To state matter of fact, the President has mismanaged Kanu’s case to an extent that it has stoked tension and caused violence in the South East and the region that used to be very peaceful has been turned to a war zone because the government, blinded by tribal bigotry, mismanaged the case.
“HURIWA calls for a truce and for the unconditional release of Nnamdi Kanu and Sunday Igboho who we believed is being detained in Benin Republic at the behest of President Buhari. HURIWA also calls for cessation of violence in the South East and that the Federal Government set up the Presidential Peace and Conflict Resolution Commission so IPOB and all agitators in Nigeria are consulted, addressed and these agitations resolved this year just like the Presidential Committee on North East set up by the President recently.
“It is dangerous for Kanu’s case and all the agitations in the country not to be addressed before the 2023 elections. The Buhari government should act fast and be guided by humanity, fairness and common sense.”