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Nnamdi Kanu’s American Lawyer Says, ‘1999 Constitution Imposed By Military, Manipulated To Benefit Those In Power’

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Bruce Fein, the US-based lawyer to Nnamdi Kanu, leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), has said it is absurd that Nigeria still uses the 1999 constitution although it was imposed on the people by a military dictator.

He said laws were meant to benefit the people, not manipulated to benefit those in power.

Fein spoke in an exclusive interview with the Publisher of SaharaReporters, Omoyele Sowore, shortly after he and Kanu’s lead counsel, Ifeanyi Ejiofor, were denied access to the IPOB leader by operatives of the Department of State Services (DSS).

Speaking during the interview, Fein condemned the disregard for human rights and due process in Nigeria by government institutions.

The constitutional lawyer said globally, the right to self-determination and due process are fundamental rights of every citizen which should also be upheld by the Nigerian government.

“Everybody recognises the right to self-determination and due process. Universally, the law condemns torture and extra-judicial killings,” he said.

“I am an expert in constitutional law and it seems very odd to me from the US that Nigeria lives on a constitution ordained by a military dictator in 1999 with no input from the public. No referendum, nothing, and the country is living under such a constitution 22 years later.

“To me, that is totally absurd. We should look at how laws benefit the people, not just being manipulated to benefit those in power.”

Kanu had remained in detention since he was re-arrested by Nigerian authorities in collaboration with others outside the country.

But on Thursday, the DSS had denied the pair access despite meeting formal notification and existing procedures on visitation.

The court-ordered routine visit of the lawyers representing the leader of the Indigenous People of Biafra took another dimension as the operatives of the DSS prevented them from seeing him on Thursday.

According to a statement issued by Kanu’s lead counsel, Ifeanyi Ejiofor on Friday, the DSS said, “that the person assigned to receive us during yesterday’s visit was on a special assignment.”

Ejiofor stated that he was in the secret police’s office with a constitutional lawyer from the United States (US), Bruce Fein, but they were prevented from seeing the separatist leader despite meeting formal notification and existing procedures on visitation.

Fein had in May filed a lawsuit on behalf of IPOB in the US to revoke the six A-29 Tucano fighter jets sold to the Nigerian government and also block the remaining six from being conveyed to the country.

Both Ejiofor and Fein were not allowed to see Kanu on Thursday.

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