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Sanusi in detention: SERAP drags FG, Kano to UN

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Following the arbitrary detention and degrading treatment of deposed Emir of Kano, Muhammadu Sanusi, Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent “an urgent complaint to the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.

Recall that Sanusi, also a former Governor, Central Bank of Nigeria, was dethroned and replaced with his in-law, Ado Bayero.

The Kano state Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, accused him of insubordination, an allegation that prompted the dethronement of Monday.

While some saw the action of Ganduje as a political witch-hunt, others reference the provisions of the constitution that gives the Governor powers over the traditional institutions.

In a statement sent to POLITICS NIGERIA, SERAP says “the arrest and continued detention of Emir Sanusi Lamido Sanusi is an egregious violation of his human rights. The Nigerian and Kano State authorities have violated the following rights under the Nigerian Constitution, 1999 (as amended) and international law in continuing to detain Emir Sanusi: the right to be free from arbitrary detention; the right to freedom of movement; and the right to due process of law.”

In the complaint dated 11 March, 2020 and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organization said: “The detention of Emir Sanusi constitutes an arbitrary deprivation of his liberty because it does not have any legal justification. The detention also does not meet minimum international standards of due process.”

SERAP is calling on the Working Group to “initiate a procedure involving the investigation of Emir Sanusi’s case, and urgently send an allegation letter to the Nigerian and Kano State authorities inquiring about the case generally, and specifically about the legal basis for his arrest, detention, and degrading treatment, each of which is in violation of international law.”

SERAP is also urging the Working Group to “issue an opinion declaring that Emir Sanusi’s deprivation of liberty and detention is arbitrary and in violation of Nigeria’s Constitution and obligations under international law. We also urge the Working Group to call for Emir Sanusi’s immediate release.”

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