Family of Nnamdi Kanu, a separatist leader, say he was seized and tortured in Kenya and then flown to Nigeria
Nnamdi Kanu, the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob), a prominent separatist movement proscribed in Nigeria, has been held there since June last year.
The Nigerian government has previously said he was extradited to the country’s capital city, Abuja, with assistance from Interpol but his family claim the father of two was seized and tortured in Kenya before being flown to Nigeria.
It cites testimony Kanu has given to his lawyers and brother, an expert report, which has identified the flight they believe he was unlawfully transported on, and the Nigerian government’s failure to provide details as to how Kanu – who did not have his British passport with him – came to be there.
Bindmans, which has previously threatened legal action over lack of consular assistance for Kanu, says Truss must take a view on whether there has been a breach of international law or face a court challenge.
“Forming a view as to whether a breach of international law has occurred, and if so the gravity of the breach, is therefore an essential prerequisite to the exercise of discretion on taking further steps at international and domestic law.”
His brother, Kingsley Kanu, said: “With every day that passes, I am increasingly concerned for my brother’s welfare in detention and increasingly frustrated by the UK government’s ineffectiveness in assisting him. I hope the court will rule the foreign secretary must recognise the seriousness of my brother’s situation and properly consider what other steps she can take to assist him in light of his extraordinary rendition.”
Both Nigerian and Kenyan authorities have denied that Kenya was involved in the arrest. The Nigerian and Kenyan high commissions in London were all approached for comment.
A Foreign Office spokesperson said: “We are providing consular support to a British national who is detained in Nigeria. We are in regular contact with the Nigerian authorities, and the detainee’s family and legal representatives.”