Godwin Tsa, Abuja
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) said it lacked the statutory powers to enforce court orders and urged rights activist, Mr. Femi Falana to approach the court on the issue of alleged illegal detention of 40 persons by the Nigerian Navy.
Falana had given the commission seven days to have the Navy release or prosecute those allegedly being detained in naval, other military facilities, or face a writ of mandamus before a Federal High Court.
The rights activist recalled his earlier letter, dated May 19, where he requested for the release of 40 Nigerians allegedly being detained by the Navy without trial.
Aside the 40, Falana said yesterday that 57 other persons had been held in crowded cells at the Nigerian Naval Ship (NNS) Beecroft in Apapa, Lagos, and 10 others inside a vessel at the Marina Jetty, Lagos, between three and 18 months without a remand order.
According to Falana, the commission has not deemed it fit to sanction the Navy, in exercise of its powers under the National Human Rights Commission (Amendment) Act, 2010, following its failure to respond to his petition on the alleged illegal detention of 40 Nigerians.