The Court of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, has ordered the Nigerian government to release detained former National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki.

The court declared that Dasuki’s detention, release and further arrest on November 4 after he was granted bail by a court of law, is unlawful and arbitrary.

Mr. Dasuki is facing multiple trials for alleged diversion of $2.1 billion meant for the purchase of arms in the immediate past administration.

He approached the ECOWAS court after he was rearrested by members of Nigeria’s State Security Service shortly after meeting his bail conditions in November last year.

He has remained in the custody of the SSS since his arrest.

On Tuesday, a three-member panel led by Justice Friday Nwoke said Nigeria’s government was wrong in arresting Mr. Dasuki without a search warrant, adding that the pattern of arrest negates the provisions of Section 28 of the Nigerian Police Act.

The court said government failed to prove its reasons for arresting and detaining Mr. Dasuki, as documents presented before it only emphasised the allegations of fraud and illegal possession of arms.

It added that the ECOWAS court was not set to determine whether or not the possession of arms by Mr. Dasuki amounted to an offence or not.

It however decided that the arrest was unlawful, arbitrary and a violation of local and international rights to liberty.

The court ruled that Federal Government should pay a sum of N15 million as damages to Mr. Dasuki.

It also decided that the cost of litigation will be summed up and charged against the Nigerian government.

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