In an Order on 8th May 2023, Lord Justice Lewis, a senior British Court of Appeal judge, granted the family of Nnamdi Kanu permission to appeal the UK High Court judgment that found that the British authorities could lawfully evade reaching any conclusion on whether Mr Nnamdi Kanu has been tortured, subjected to extraordinary rendition and arbitrarily detained.
Kanu’s special counsel, Barr Aloy Ejimakor, disclosed this in a release made available to Adadareporters on Thursday.
It would be recalled that in a ruling on 23rd March 2023, the UK High Court had declined Kanu’s family’s suit for judicial review of the failure of the British government to reach a firm view in Nnamdi Kanu’s extraordinary rendition.
This earlier ruling prompted an application for leave to appeal to British Court of Appeal by the Bindmans LLP, the UK law firm representing the Kanu family in the case.
In the current order, assuming jurisdiction over the appeal, Lord Justice Lewis stated that, “The grounds of appeal raise important issues concerning the scope of the obligations on the respondent in relation to requests for consular assistance in respect of British nationals detained abroad and the proper interpretation and application of the decision of the Court of Appeal in R(Abassi) v Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office  UKHRR 76.
“For those reasons, there is a compelling reason for the appeal to be heard, within the meaning of CPR 52.6(1)(b). Permission is granted on all three grounds.”
And citing the urgency arising from the continued solitary confinement of Nnamdi Kanu, the Court of Appeal ordered that the hearing of the appeal be expedited. Accordingly, the hearing has been listed for Thursday 22nd June 2023.
Reacting to the ruling, Kingsley Kanunta Kanu, Nnamdi Kanu’s brother, said that: “My family is delighted that the Court of Appeal has unhesitatingly recognized the importance and urgency of Nnamdi’s case.”