Court once more rejects Kanu’s request to wear traditional attire while incarcerated

by Amos Kalu
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Nnamdi Kanu, the self-declared leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), had asked to wear the Igbo traditional dress, or “isi agu,” while in detention, but the Federal High Court in Abuja once more turned him down.

Kanu’s application was rejected on Thursday by Justice James Omotoso, who found it to be without merit.

The Court ruled that, contrary to what the petitioner claimed, the refusal to wear traditional Igbo clothing did not constitute a breach of human rights.

Nnamdi Kanu Biafra

The IPOB leader has allegedly failed to establish his claim in order to obtain the reliefs he requested in his lawsuit, according to the court.

According to Justice Omotoso, there is no evidence in the case that the petitioner was subjected to discrimination or that other prisoners were granted any more advantages or rights than he was.

“The applicant’s case is based on speculation without any tangible evidence, the applicant’s suit lacked merit, failed, and as a result, the suit is hereby denied,” the court’s decision reads.

Kanu requested a declaration from the court in his fundamental human rights enforcement suit that the DSS is required to uphold individuals’ fundamental rights while performing their authorized duties, according to his attorney Maxwell Okpara.

An affirmation that the applicant (Kanu), who is detained at the moment, is entitled to his human rights under the Constitution.

The petitioner further asked the court to rule that denying him the right to wear traditional Igbo clothing and other traditional clothing that is permitted by the Constitution constituted a breach of his fundamental human rights.

In their counter-affidavits, the respondents, the DG DSS and the AGF, asserted that they had not in any way violated Kanu’s constitutional rights.

They claimed that Kanu’s plea to wear the traditional Igbo attire was denied by Justice Binta Nyako, who is presiding over his treasonable felony prosecution. They also claimed that granting the request would equate to Kanu advancing the terrorist cause for which he is being jailed.

In a different case with the case number FHC/ABJ/CS/1585/2021, Justice Binta Nyako had previously denied Kanu’s request to wear traditional Igbo clothing that represented the stigma of the illegal group known as the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

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