Bruce Fein Filed Second Supplemental Submission to the WGAD in Geneva over MNK illegal detention in Nigeria


RE:  Arbitrary Detention of Nnamdi Kanu by the Federal Government of Nigeria—Second Supplemental Submission

 

Dear Working Group:

 

I am Nnamdi Kanu’s international lawyer and spokesman.

 

I previously filed submissions with the Working Group on October 9 and 27, 2021, respectively, which need no repetition.

 

I am making a second supplemental submission in response toalarming developments that unfolded today during a scheduled hearing before the Federal High Court of Nigeria in Abuja to address Defendant Nnamdi Kanu’s motion to dismiss the seven-count Amended Charge for clear absence of Nigerian jurisdiction over the alleged offenses.

 

I was present with lead counsel Ifeanyi Ejiofor and other attorneys prepared to enter the courtroom to represent Nnamdi Kanu. But I was illegally singled out by the Department of Security Services for exclusion for the fifth time without explanation. We lawyers had collectively agreed in advance to boycott the court proceedings if I was again illegally denied entry and Nnamdi Kanu was again denied his right of representation by counsel of his choosing 

guaranteed under Nigeria’s Constitution and various international covenants to which Nigeria is a signatory. The boycott ensued when I was arbitrarily excluded from the courtroom.

 

A video press conference outside the courtroom was held explaining the reasons for the boycott as we collectively awaited the presiding Judge’s appearance. Without communicating with any of us—including lead counsel Ejiofor—the Judge locked us out of the courtroom and consulted privately with the prosecutors and unrepresented Nnamdi Kanu, a flagrant display of prosecutorial bias.

 

The Judge adjourned the case until January 19, 2022, without explanation. Among other things, the result means Nnamdi Kanu will have been deprived of liberty for six months since June 2021 in solitary confinement without a hearing on the merits of the government’s allegations or access to needed medical care—the very definition of arbitrary detention in violation of a preemptory norm of international law.

 

Accordingly, Nnamdi Kanu respectfully requests the Working Group to issue an official opinion finding his detention arbitraryin violation of international law and instructing the Federal Government of Nigeria to release him immediately.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

/s/Bruce Fein

Bruce Fein, Esq.

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