ECOWAS Court Dismisses Nnamdi Kanu’s $800 Million Suit Against Buhari’s Government
The Court of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) sitting in Abuja, has dismissed a suit filed by the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, against President Muhammadu Buhari-led government.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Nnamdi Kanu had through his lawyer, Mr. Ifeanyi Ejiofor, filed the case before the Court on 3rd March 2016.
He claimed that his rights to life, personal integrity, privacy, fair trial, freedom of movement, freedom of expression, personal liberty, freedom of association, private property, right to existence and right to self-determination were violated following his arrest and detention by Nigerian security agents.
He also alleged that he was a victim of arbitrary arrest, detention, torture inhuman and degrading treatment while in detention and that his personal belongings were confiscated by the defendant through its agent.
Nnamdi Kanu demanded monetary compensation in the sum of $800 million US dollars.
However, during the court ruling on Wednesday, Justice Dupe Atoki held that Nnamdi Kanu failed to prove its allegations against FG, saying it had no reason to conclude that his arrest and detention were unlawful and arbitrary as claimed.
The three member panel of the Court also dismissed Kanu’s request for monetary compensation.
Though the Court acknowledged that the IPOB leader had the legal capacity to approach it to seek redress for any violation of his human rights, it however held that without a mandate, he lacked the legal personality to represent the IPOB before the Court.
The court further struck out names of the second and third defendants, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice and the Director General of the Department of State Service, DSS, from the suit on the premise that they were not signatories to the ECOWAS Revised Treat, thus leaving only the Federal Republic of Nigeria as the sole defendant in the suit.