From Aidoghie Paulinus, Abuja
The United Kingdom (UK) has said it takes very seriously allegations of human rights violations against British nationals.
The British High Commission in Abuja stated this in response to a statement by the counsel to the detained leader of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), Nnamdi Kanu, Aloy Ejimakor and Kanu’s family.
The United Kingdom also said it continued to seek clarification about the circumstances of the arrest of Kanu from the Nigerian Government.
Ejimakor had in a statement issued on Thursday, said no trial will take place until the issue of Kanu’s ‘illegal abduction’ was resolved.
Ejimakor said: “In my opinion, before any court can subject Kanu to trial, it has to first conduct a trial within trial on the grievous incident that forced him to leave Nigeria and the equally grievous incident that forced him back to Nigeria. No court of law with conscience and equity will overlook those two incidents and proceed to trial.”
Kanu’s younger brother, Kingsley Kanu, had also in a statement, said there would not be any court proceeding on July 26, until the issue of how his brother was arrested and brought back to Nigeria was addressed. Responding to Saturday Sun’s enquiry, the Head of Communications, British High Commission, Abuja, Dean Hurlock, said: “The UK Government is aware of the ongoing detention of Mr Kanu.
“The UK has requested consular access to Mr Kanu from the Nigerian government, and we stand ready to provide consular assistance.
“As a British national, our current priority is Mr Kanu’s health, welfare and fair treatment.
“Our consular staff will always endeavour to give appropriate and tailored support to British nationals overseas, and to their families in the UK.
“The British High Commission in Nigeria stands ready to provide such assistance to Mr Kanu and his family in the UK. “The UK takes all allegations of human rights violations very seriously and raises concerns with local authorities where appropriate,” Hurlock said.
Hurlock further said it was very important to the Government of the United Kingdom that any trial or legal proceedings regarding Kanu followed due process.