• Campagnes

Further information on UA 225/93 (AFR 44/06/93, 9 July; and follow-up AFR 44/08/93, 26 July) - Nigeria: legal concern: Beko Ransome-Kuti, Femi Falana, Chief Gani Fawehinmi, Alhaji Lamidi Adedibu

, N° d'index: AFR 44/009/1993

Beko Ransome-Kuti, Femi Falana and Chief Gani Fawehinmi, human rights activists and leading members of the Campaign for Democracy, remain imprisoned in Kuje prison, Abuja, despite a court ruling that they should be released on bail. The three were charged on 12 July with sedition and conspiracy. On 28 July bail was granted, but they are now being held under the State Security (Detention of Persons) Decree no 2, 1984, which permits administrative detention for renewable periods of six weeks. They have no recourse to a court to challenge their continuing detention without trial. Alhaji Lamidi Adedibu, a prominent member of the Social Democratic Party arrested on 20 July, is also believed to be still detained in Abuja without charge or trial. All four are prisoners of conscience.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: AFR 44/09/93
Distr: UA/SC
5 August 1993
Further information on UA 225/93 (AFR 44/06/93, 9 July 1993) - and follow-up:
AFR 44/08/93, 26 July 1993 - Legal Concern
NIGERIA:Beko Ransome-Kuti, 52, doctor, Chairman of the Campaign for Democracy,
President of the Committee for the Defence of Human Rights
Femi Falana, lawyer, member of the Campaign for Democracy, President of the
National Association of Democratic Lawyers (NADL)
Chief Gani Fawehinmi, 55, human rights lawyer, member of the Campaign for
Democracy
Alhaji Lamidi Adedibu, member of the Social Democratic Party
(SDP)
Beko Ransome-Kuti, Femi Falana and Chief Gani Fawehinmi, all human rights
activists and leading members of the Campaign for Democracy, remain imprisoned
in Kuje prison in the federal capital, Abuja, despite a court ruling that they
should be released on bail. The three were charged on 12 July 1993 with sedition
and conspiracy. Bail was initially refused and they were remanded in custody
until 30 September. On 28 July bail was granted and the conditions met, but
they are now being held under the provisions of the State Security (Detention
of Persons) Decree No.2 of 1984. This permits administrative detention for
renewable periods of six weeks thus effectively providing for indefinite
detention without charge or trial of anyone suspected of threatening national
security. They have no recourse to a court to challenge their continuing
detention. Amnesty International considers Beko Ransome Kuti, Femi Falana
and Chief Gani Fawehinmi to be prisoners of conscience, detained for their
peaceful activities to promote democracy and human rights.
Alhaji Lamidi Adedibu is also believed to be still detained in Abuja without
charge or trial. A prominent member of the Social Democratic Party, he was
arrested on 20 July after calling for a boycott of new presidential elections
ordered by General Ibrahim Babangida for 14 August. Amnesty International
believes that he, too, is a prisoner of conscience.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
Dr Beko Ransome-Kuti, Femi Falana and Chief Gani Fawehinmi were arrested in
early July after the Campaign for Democracy called protests against the
government's decision on 23 June 1993 to withhold the results of the presidential
election on 12 June 1993, claiming that there were malpractices during the
election. International observers, however, judged that the election had
largely been fair. Two candidates, representing parties established by the
military government of President Babangida, contested the election. Although
the results were not officially announced, it was clear that Chief Moshood
Abiola of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) had been successful. The government
also repealed legislation allowing for transition to civilian rule. Attempts
by Chief Moshood Abiola and also elected SDP state governors to get the courts
to overturn the annulment of the results of the 12 June election were thwarted
by a decree issued by the government on 19 July 1993 which banned the courts
from considering any case relating to the presidential election. President
Babangida has maintained, however, that he will still hand over power to a
civilian government on 27 August 1993. Although new elections were initially
planned for 14 August, these were subsequently abandoned and
Page 2 of 2FU 225/93
President Babangida announced on 31 July that an unelected interim government
would be installed; its powers, however, would be limited. This is widely
interpreted as an attempt by President Babangida to retain power beyond 27
August.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and
airmail letters either in English or your own language:
- protesting against the continued detention of Beko Ransome-Kuti, Femi Falana
and Chief Gani Fawehinmi despite a court ruling authorising their release on
bail;
- expressing concern that they are held under Decree 2 which denies their
fundamental human rights, in particular, their right to challenge their
detention in a court of law;
- expressing opposition to their indefinite imprisonment without charge or
trial and the existence of legislation which allows such indefinite
imprisonment;
- urging that they, and Alhaji Lamidi Adedibu, be immediately and
unconditionally released as prisoners of conscience.
APPEALS TO:
1) General Ibrahim Babangida
President and Chairman of the National
Defence and Security Council
State House
Abuja
Federal Capital Territory
Nigeria
Telegrams: President Babangida, Abuja, Nigeria
Telexes: [0905] 91529 or 91530 EXTNAL NG (via Ministry of Foreign
Affairs)
Salutation: Dear President
2) Mr Clement Akpamgbo
Attorney General of the Federation,
Minister of Justice and member of the
National Defence and Security Council
Ministry of Justice
Abuja
Federal Capital Territory
Nigeria
Telegrams: Attorney General Akpamgbo, Abuja, Nigeria
Telexes: [0905] 91529 or 91530 EXTNAL NG (via Ministry of Foreign
Affairs)
Salutation: Dear Minister
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
Chief Matthew Mbu
Minister of Foreign Affairs and member of
the National Defence and Security Council
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Maputo Street
Abuja
Federal Capital Territory
Nigeria
Daily Times, PMB 21340, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria
National Concord, POB 4483, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria
The Guardian, PMB 1217, Oshodi, Lagos, Nigeria
Newswatch, PMB 21499, Ikeja, Lagos, Nigeria
and to diplomatic representatives of Nigeria accredited to your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 16 September 1993.

Dans quelle langue voulez-vous lire le rapport ?