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Rights Group Seeks European Court Of Human Rights Intervention On Nnamdi Kanu’s Case

(AFRICAN EXAMINER) – A frontline civil rights advocacy group, Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has called for the intervention of the European Court of Human Rights in the case between President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration and the proscribed Indigenous Peoples of Biafra (IPOB) and its leader Mazi Nnamdi Kanu.

The association has appealed to the Chief executive of the Nigerian judicial system who is the substantive Chief Justice of Nigeria to work out a modality to grant a waiver to a judge from the European Court of Human Rights to adjudicate inside of Nigeria on the matter.

The rights group said this seems to be the best option if Justice is what everyone is after because “as it is, the nation’s judicial system is hijacked by the Executive arm of government beginning from even how the President masterminded the illegal removal of the then substantive Chief justice of Nigeria in favour of the current holder who is also a kinsman of President Muhammadu Buhari”.

They also lamented that Nigeria is structured in such a way that elevation in the judiciary is not by competency or merit but by political consideration, adding that it will take only a very courageous judge to entertain and grant fair hearing to Kanu in this instant case in which the Federal Attorney General and minister of Justice, the Special media aides of President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Information had consistently bombarded the local and international airwaves and media space with half-baked propaganda demonising both Kanu who has been in detention since he was abducted by the current administration in collaboration with the Kenyan government in Nairobi.

Reacting to the rejection of the bail application of the detailed IPOB leader by the Federal High Court sitting in Abuja on Wednesday, HURIWA in a statement by its National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko noted that unless Nigeria brings in a European born judge with special waiver to entertain the case instituted by President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration against him, it is impracticable for any Nigerian based judge to deliver justice and fairness to the Prisoner of Conscience.

Describing the reasons given for the rejection of his bail application as groundless and grotesque, the association said the current administration has committed colossal funds and human resources including alleged bribery of foreign governments and organisations to adopt adversarial positions against Kanu and IPOB.

“Locally, the government has succeeded in using divide and rule tactics to brainwash the hoi-polloi in the Moslem North to perceive IPOB or Ndigbo as enemies of the Fulanis so it will take either a European judge or an unusual judicial miracle for Mazi Nnamdi Kanu to obtain fair hearing as provided for in a plethora of Constitutional provisions because for President Muhammadu Buhari and his allies, Kanu and IPOB are guilty until they prove themselves to the contrary and the judge agrees”, the group said.

HURIWA further observed that the massive media propaganda by government against Kanu including the deployment of Hausa services of international radio stations to paint him as a hater of Fulanis will make it difficult for any judge wishing to be elevated to grant fairness to the defendants.

The group added that with the active political capture of the judiciary by President Muhammadu Buhari, it will take a bold judge in Nigeria and they are not more than two at the moment to hear the case of Nnamdi Kanu and not capitulate to the threats, pressure of the executive arm of government.

“Only a political solution by way of unconditionally release of the detainee by the President or the appointment and temporary licensing of a European judge to entertain the matter that most right thinking persons can say the judiciary will deliver justice without fear of molestation or threats of physical attacks by forces embedded in the All Progressives Congress led Federal Government”, they further explained

The association also stressed that it is only someone apparently hibernating somewhere in the outer space that doesn’t know that Kanu could have been assassinated by invading armed security forces that flooded his father’s house not long ago whereby Nnamdi Kanu was spending time on bail from the Justice Binta Murtallah-Nyako led Federal High Court whereby over two dozens of his relatives were extrajudicially murdered by the State

“It is therefore preposterous for anyone let alone a very learned jurist to begin to demand explanation from a man who ran for his dear life why he never stayed back so he is gunned down so as to continue to enjoy bail.

“Is it not the living that enjoys Court’s bail and if Nnamdi Kanu did not find a way of escaping from the massive scale of military attacks and he died in the process of the unprovoked attacks, will Justice Nyako then go to Heaven to find out how the man is enjoying the ‘bail’?”, the associated added.

HURIWA recalled that the presiding judge, a Fulani born Justice Binta Nyako ruled that Nnamdi Kanu will remain in custody pending the determination of the treasonable felony charge proferred against him by the Federal Government.

Justice Nyako held that Kanu must explain the reason why he breached the previous bail that was given to him, before he could enjoy another favourable discretion from the court.

“Until the issue of absence of the defendant for his trial, with all the bail conditions breached, is determined, the instant application of the defendant for bail will at best be premature and it is refused. However, the defendant is at liberty to refile the application”, Justice Nyako held.

The court noted that Kanu’s trial had since 2015, suffered various setbacks owing to over 19 interlocutory applications that have been filed in the matter. The judge therefore, implored the parties to allow the case to proceed on trial to enable the charge to be determined, one way or the other.

Short URL: https://www.africanexaminer.com/?p=77013

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