Ahmed Raji (SAN), a senior lawyer defending Ex-National Security Adviser, Col. Sambo Dasuki (rtd), has revealed that the Department of State Services (DSS) lied about the continued detention of his client.
Raji noted that contrary to what the DSS said, the secret service deliberately kept Dasuki in custody in violation of many court orders for his release.
The DSS who arrested and detained Dasuki since December 2015 had alleged that the ex-NSA, the leader of the Islamic Movement of Nigeria, Sheikh Ibraheem El-Zakzaky, and Omoyele Sowore, the convener of the #RevolutionNow protest, opted to remain in its custody.
Dasuki’s lawyer however noted that the Federal High Court in Abuja had on November 3, 2015, granted Dasuki bail on self-recognisance and three weeks leave to travel abroad for medical treatment, but the DSS “laid siege to his house in Asokoro, in brazen defiance of the order of court; and deliberately disallowed him from accomplishing the terms of the order.”
Raji noted that the claim by the DSS is far from the truth. He further asked why an individual would choose to remain in DSS custody.
“It is therefore most incorrect and inaccurate to claim that Col. Dasuki prayed the court to be kept in DSS facility.
“This is far from the truth. Perhaps, there is no synergy between the counsel appearing for the government in Dasuki matters and the DSS hierarchy. Consequently, we appeal to all authorities, and principally – DSS, to comply with the various extant orders of the court by immediately releasing Col. Dasuki (rtd).”
Read Raji’s statement below;
“The Federal Government, while confirming the continued detention of Col. Dasuki, explained that such actions were due to the severity of the alleged offences. Excerpts of these events were well stated in several reports of national dailies of 31st December, 2015.
“In complying with the due process of law, Col. Dasuki filed processes seeking to extend the travel period granted by the Federal High Court and the DSS vehemently opposed the application and continued to barricade Col. Dasuki’s residence.
“Shortly thereafter, two separate charges were preferred against him at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja in Charge No. FCT/CR/42/2015 & Charge No. FCT/CR/43/2015 against Col. Dasuki, while DSS continued to detain him on purported investigation on allegations of money laundering offences.
“Bail was subsequently granted on the charges on December 21, 2015, and December 18, 2015, terms of which were duly complied with. Consequently, he was released by the Kuje Prison authorities where he was remanded, but on stepping out of the gate of the prison, he was seized by the men of DSS and he has been kept by them since.
“Since the re-arrest of Col. Dasuki in December 2015, no further investigation was carried out and no new charges were preferred against him.
“The ECOWAS Court ordered his immediate release and also awarded N5m damages against the Federal Government. Despite the fact that Nigeria is a member of the ECOWAS, the judgment of ECOWAS was disregarded by the Federal Government.
“Finally, a fundamental human rights action was filed on behalf of Col. Dasuki at the Federal High Court – Abuja, on March 15, 2018, seeking to protect his right to dignity of his person, personal liberty, freedom of movement, private and family life, as enshrined under sections 34(1), 35(1), (4) & (5), 37 & 41(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The Federal High Court, Coram: Justice Ijeoma L. Ojukwu, on the 2nd of July 2018, found the continued detention of Col. Dasuki to be unlawful and granted bail on terms.
“The Federal Government, has since 2015, failed to comply with any of the bail orders of the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Federal High Court as well as the ECOWAS Court, granted in favour of Col. Dasuki.”
Jonathan Dennis is an Editor at Naija Buzz News Network. He oversees the production and publication of stories on NaijaBuzz.News and on Naija Buzz News TV. The former banker left his banking job to join Naija Buzz News in 2019. He was briefly the head of the “Wetin Dey Happen” news team. Jonathan is a proud ‘Akwa-Ibomite’ from Akwa Ibom State, South-South Nigeria.