‘Nnamdi Kanu still technically in Kenya’ – Lawyer

Aloy Ejimakor, counsel to Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, says his client is “technically still in Kenya” as Kanu travelled to Kenya on a British passport, hence should have been expelled to the same country and not Nigeria.

Recall that Kanu was recently rearrested and repatriated to Nigeria from an undisclosed African country which is believed to be Kenya, though the Nigerian government is silent on where Kanu was rearrested from.

Kanu was first arrested in 2017 by the Nigerian government for his agitation for the actualisation of Biafra but was granted bail in the same year by Justice Binta Nyako of an Abuja Federal High Court.

The IPOB leader jumped bail and fled Nigeria to London but his lawyer argued that he did not jump bail as he fled Nigeria due to the actions of the Federal Government.

He had claimed that the IPOB leader left Nigeria due to fear of being killed after the Nigerian Army invaded his residence.

Ejimakor, in a statement he signed entitled: “Kanu is technically still in Kenya,” said it was dubious that Kenya attributed Kanu’s citizenship to Nigeria because it’s his place of birth.

The statement reads partly: “Yes, that’s right: In the purest interpretations of foreign relations law, as applied to Britain and Kenya, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu is technically speaking, still in Kenya. How? Dual national or not, Kanu departed Britain and travelled to Kenya as a British citizen and Kenya admitted him as such. That’s the starting point.

“So, after his admission to Kenya, it happens that Kanu must be expelled from Kenyan soil (with or without due process), the next natural and legal thing to do is for Kenya to expel him to Britain, not Nigeria. Choosing to expel him to Nigeria means that he could’ve also been expelled to any other country than Nigeria.

“Why? Because Kanu presented himself to Kenya as a British citizen, not a Nigerian citizen or even a dual citizen. In international law, it was clearly a three-way immigration contract between Kanu, Britain and Kenya. Nigeria was not a party to it; and Nigeria was never in reckoning at the Kenyan port of entry when Kanu presented himself for admission. Lawyers call it the privity of contract.

“Counting from the time of Kanu’s abduction to the infamous rendition, Kenya sighted no other travel document that could’ve, in addition to Britain, attributed another nationality to Kanu, including that of Nigeria. Or, was Kanu admitted to Kenya on a Nigerian birth certificate?

“So, it’s dubious that Kenya attributed Nigerian citizenship to Kanu because sponsors of the abduction and rendition presumably told Kenya that Kanu was born in Nigeria.”




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