The Federal High Court in Abuja has been told to set aside a suit filed by the dethroned Emir of Kano, Sanusi Lamido Sanusi, over his banishment.
The request was made by the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, who noted that the court lacked the jurisdiction to hear the fundament rights enforcement suit.
It could be recalled that Governor Abdullahi Ganduje led government of Kano State in early March 2020, dethroned the former governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) after which security agents transferred him to Abuja.
The deposed emir was again after a few moments moved to Awe in Nasarawa State where he was kept in a private apartment until March 13 when he obtained an interim order of the court for his release from house arrest.
Naija News understands that Sanusi had through his lead counsel, Lateef Fagbemi (SAN), condemned his banishment and subsequent house arrest, noting that the actions had violated his human right freedom of movement, among others.
However, the IGP argued that the violation of the rights complained by the banished emir followed his dethronement which happened in Kano.
According to Adamu, that was supposed to be the appropriate location for the former CBN governor to file the suit and not Abuja.
He said; “The alleged infringement of the fundamental right of the applicant in this suit (Sanusi) is only ancillary to the dethronement of the applicant as the Emir of Kano, which is a matter within the jurisdiction of the High Court of a state.”
“It is crystal clear from all the processes filed by the applicant that the facts that gave rise to this case arose from Kano State, where the applicant was dethroned as the Emir and flown to Abuja en route Nasarawa State. It is our submission that coming into Abuja was only as a mere passage to their actual destination, which is Nasarawa State, and as such, Abuja cannot, by any stretch of reasoning, be said to be the place where the infringement occurred.”
According to the IGP; “the dethronement which led to his banishment was a chieftaincy matter that only state High Court and not the Federal High Court had jurisdiction to hear.”
However, Sanusi had in another counter-affidavit condemned Adamu’s claims, reiterated that his suit was about his family’s forceful banishment from the palace and from Kano.
According to him in the affidavit, “the infringement of his fundamental rights was not limited to Kano but was a continuous process that spanned three territories – Kano, Abuja and Nasarawa.”
“The nucleus or gravamen of the applicant’s complaint is centrally on the violations of the applicant’s fundamental rights and there is no or any other complaints therein,” said Sanusi’s lawyer.
He added, “The claim of the applicant, as presently constituted, does not have any colouration of a chieftaincy matter as alleged by the 1st respondent. The applicant is not challenging his deposition in this case.”
In his ruling, Justice Chikere scheduled the hearing of the suit for October 20, 2020.
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