The United Nations (UN) has frowned on the incarceration of Nnamdi Kanu by the Department of State Services and his treatment in their custody.
This was contained in the Mandates of the Special Rapporteur on Torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishments; the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention; the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances; the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; Special Rapporteur on minority issues and the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism.
In the document published on Tuesday. October 26,, the UN said it received information; on allegations of enforced disappearance, arbitrary detention, torture, and ill-treatment of Nnamdi Kanu by Kenyan Security Officials; as well as his illegal rendition to Nigeria to face trial for terrorism-related charges; which were believed to be linked to his leadership of the Indigenous People of Biafra.
It added that since his rendition to Nigeria, Kanu had been denied family visits; confidential access to a lawyer and necessary medical treatment for his underlying illness.
The mandate read in part, “While we do not prejudge the accuracy of these allegations; we would like to express our concern in relation to the enforced disappearance of Nnamdi Kanu from June 19, 2021; until his reappearance at Nigerian Federal High Court in Abuja on June 29, 2021; and his reported illegal rendition from Nairobi to Abuja without judicial process.”
The UN further described the alleged torture and ill-treatment of Kanu as alarming; saying they constitute a violation of fundamental human rights.
It said, “We are further alarmed by the alleged torture and ill-treatment Mr Kanu has been subjected to during his detention by the DSS in Nigeria. If confirmed, these allegations would constitute prima facie violations of fundamental human rights; including the right not to be arbitrarily deprived of liberty; and the absolute and non-derogable prohibition of torture; and other ill-treatment under the International Covenant on Political and Civil Rights.
“The Committee against Torture and the UN Human Rights Committee has repeatedly concluded that enforced disappearances may amount to torture and other forms of ill-treatment both with regard to the disappeared and with regard to their family members, due to the anguish and uncertainty concerning the date and whereabouts of loved ones.”
The UN further demanded an explanation of the initial steps taken by the Federal Government; to safeguard the rights of Kanu in compliance with international instruments.