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Court orders ‘maximum comfort’ for Nigeria separatist


A Federal High Court in Nigeria’s capital, Abuja, has ordered the security police to ensure that separatist leader Nnamdi Kanu gets “maximum comfort” while in their custody on treason and other charges.

The order followed a complaint by his lawyers, during a pre-trial hearing today, that their client was not allowed to change clothes or even practise his religion.

The emergency hearing followed arguments by his lawyers that the earlier adjournment of the case was against his right to a speedy trial. Mr. Kanu was not brought to court.

He heads the Indigenous People of Biafra (Ipob) group which has been agitating for the secession of south-eastern Nigeria.

The trial has been adjourned to 18 January next year.

Recently, some leaders from south-eastern Nigeria approached President Muhammadu Buhari to request that Mr. Kanu be freed.

In response, the president said it was a difficult request but he would give it some consideration.

The last time he was freed, Mr. Kanu jumped bail after accusing the Nigerian army of attempting to kill him.

He was re-arrested in June after being repatriated from an undisclosed country.

His lawyers and family members alleged he was detained and mistreated in Kenya before being taken to Nigeria, though Kenya has denied involvement.

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