BREAKING: UN demands immediate release of Nnamdi Kanu

Nnamdi Kanu, leader of IPOB, is being tried on the charges  of treason by the Federal Government of Nigeria in a Federal High Court sitting in Abuja.

According to a document from the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, the UN, has called on the  Nigerian Government to, “immediately release Kanu unconditionally” and pay him adequate compensations for the arbitrary violation of his fundamental human rights.

It also recommended that Government officials responsible for the torture meted to the IPOB Leader be investigated and punished.

The United Nations, had waded into the matter of the  arrest and extraordinary rendition of Mazi Nnamdi Kanu from Kenya in 2021 and indicted both Nigeria and Kenya for Kanu’s unlawful arrest and rendition.

The apex world body not only wants officials responsible for his torture and rights violations punished but also given Nigeria six months to comply with the demand.

In the full opinion which was made available to , the United Nations, through the UN Human Rights Council Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, indicted both Nigeria and Kenya Governments for the arrest and extraordinary rendition, torture and continued detention of Kanu without due process.

The UN body further directed Nigeria to report back within six months of the transmission of its opinions on Kanu’s matter, steps taken to comply with all the recommendations thereof.

It referred the case of Kanu’s torture to Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment for further consideration.

The UN Working Group also threatened to take further action to ensure the recommendations are complied with, noting that both Nigeria and Kenya are signatories to the Convention and should comply.

The 16-page report dated July 20, 2022 was adopted on April 4 by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention at its 93rd session, held between March 30 and April 8, 2022.

The unedited version of the document sighted by, and was marked: “Opinions adopted by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention at its ninety-third session, 30 March – 8 April 2022,” the Working Group said in the report that Kanu was a victim of State persecution as Nigeria failed to provide convincing explanations with proof that he is guilty of treason and other criminal allegations levelled against him.

“The Working Group also considers that Mr. Kanu’s presumption of innocence was violated as the Department surrounded the court complex with an array of armed forces, creating an atmosphere of intimidation and danger (see para. 9), a submission which the Government has chosen not to contest. The Working Group recalls that defendants should not be presented to the court in a manner indicating that they may be dangerous criminals, as this also undermines the presumption of innocence. The Working Group finds a breach of article 14 (2) of the Covenant.

“Further, according to the source and uncontested by the Government, following his rendition to Nigeria, Mr. Kanu was detained in solitary confinement within the headquarters of the Department in Abuja, Nigeria. He is reportedly currently still held in a very small cell where he is exposed to daily psychological and mental torture without access to other inmates or any other person except for the Department officers. Mr. Kanu is also allegedly denied access to reading or writing materials and has been refused access to professional medical care despite a serious heart ailment.

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