Bruce Fein, a United States of America, USA-based counsel to the detained leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB, Mazi Nnamdi Kanu, has accused the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Catriona Laing, of conniving with the Nigerian government to detain Kanu in perpetuity.
Kanu has remained in detention at the Abuja headquarters of the Department of State Services, DSS, since June 2021 when he was extraordinarily renditioned to Nigeria from Kenya.
Fein accused Laing of complicity and complacency over Kanu’s ordeals, alleging that the envoy was personally sabotaging efforts to release the IPoB leader.
In a letter to the British envoy dated February 10, 2023, and made available to Sunday Vanguard, Kanu’s lawyer expressed disbelief that Britain and her High Commissioner would be unmoved over the continued illegal detention of her citizen against court orders and the United Nations Working Group on Arbitrary Detention.
The US lawyer expressed shock that despite the opinion of the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, Nigeria should unconditionally release Kanu, Laing who should have capitalized on that to press for Kanu’s freedom, looked the other way.
Fein, therefore, sought to know the motive behind her silence over the ordeals of Kanu, a British citizen.
“What is your ulterior motive? Oil and gas for the United Kingdom
Lucrative UK business arrangements? he queried.
The letter read in part: “Evidence has surfaced that you personally are sabotaging Mr Kanu’s unconditional release as mandated under jus cogens norms of international law binding on all nations irrespective of consent.
You have taken cynicism and hypocrisy to a new level.
“Your government has taken extreme umbrage at Russian President, Vladimir Putin’s violation of international law in attacking Ukraine and committing war crimes, but you have made the UK complicit in flouting international law like Mr. Putin by affirmatively encouraging the government of Nigeria to continue its illegal detention of Nnamdi Kanu.
“You and your country plunged to new depths. You go to war over the Falkland Islands thousands of miles from English shores with a tiny population of 3,500 to keep them free from Argentinian misgovernment. But Nnamdi Kanu, a British citizen, is abandoned to the cruel, lawless dungeon of Nigeria’s DSS.”
Fein had also earlier this year, written to President Muhammadu Buhari, reminding him of the dire consequences of keeping Kanu in illegal detention against UN Opinion and various court orders authorizing his immediate and unconditional release.