Nigerian Lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN) Wants DSS probed Over the Abduction of Ambazonian Leaders
NIGERIAN Human Rights activist and lawyer, Femi Falana, SAN, has petitioned the Inspector General of Police, IGP, Mr. Ibrahim Idris, requesting him to investigate the abduction of the Southern Cameroonian leaders in Abuja, by the Department of State Service, DSS, the Vanguard has reported. Falana was speaking in a press conference yesterday in Abuja, haven been consulted to stand as lead Counsel for the arrested leaders.
In presenting his demands to the IGP, the Senior Advocate of Nigeria, listed the names of the abducted leaders include; Dr. Julius Ayuk Tabe; Mr. Wilfred Tassang; Dr. Nfor Ngala Nfor; Professor Augustine Awasom; Dr. Cornelius Kwanga; Dr. Henry Kimeng; Elias Eyambe Esq; Nalova Bih Esq; Dr. Ojong Okongo; and Dr. Fidelis Nde Che.
BaretaNews, however notes that the number of the abducted had risen to 11 to include; Blaise Berinyuy, Esq.
It is necessary to state that these leaders were abducted at Nera Hotel, Abuja on Friday, January 5, 2018, after they arrived for a meeting on how to mobilise resources for the more than 28 000 Ambazonian refugees currently spread across three states in Nigeria, notably; Cross River, Benue and Taraba.
Falana, also demanded for the immediate release of the Ambazonian leaders within 48 hours or they be charged to court, noting that;
“if our clients are not released from illegal custody or arraigned in court within 48 hours of the receipt of this letter we shall not hesitate to apply to the Federal High Court to secure the enforcement of their fundamental rights to personal liberty guaranteed by Section 35 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 as amended and Article 6 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Cap A9 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.”
According to Falana’s petition, the abducted are leaders of the movement agitating for the creation of the Republic of Ambazonia in Cameroon and “not illegal immigrants in Nigeria as some of them have been granted political asylum by the Federal Government while others have valid permanent resident status in Nigeria apart from Professor Augustine Awasom who is a United States citizen. Our clients were assembled for a meeting at Nera Hotel, Abuja on Saturday, January 6, 2018.
”However, before the commencement of the meeting a team of armed operatives of the State Security Service invaded the venue, abducted our clients and took them away to an undisclosed place. The said abduction was reported by the Premium Times edition of Sunday, January 7, 2018. In spite of the detailed report of the credible online news medium the State Security Service has denied knowledge of the abduction of our clients. Consequently, all efforts made by the counsel and family members of our clients to visit them in custody have proved abortive.”
From every indication, Ambazonians are going to the courts in Nigeria and it will be another opportunity for La Republic du Cameroun to proof her sovereignty over Ambazonia. Is this even necessary when there is already an existing judgment by the same court to that effect?
As the legal team battles for the release of the President of the Interim Government of Ambazonia, Sissiku Ayuk-Tabe, and his collaborators, they must also consider requesting the courts to compel the Federal Government of Nigeria, to enforce the court judgement of 2002 by Justice Roselyn Ukeji on this same matter.
The heat must be on LRC from every angle to ensure that they bow and end their illegal occupation of Ambazonia or they present an Act of Union between the two Cameroons to validate their territorial claim.Come rain, come shine, Ambazonia shall be free and Ambazonians shall live in freedoms.
James Agbor, BaretaNews Political Analyst