The Federal High Court, Abuja, has declared the banishment of deposed Emir of Kano, Lamido Sanusi, from Kano State as unlawful and unconstitutional.
Justice Anwuli Chikere who ruled on the matter on Tuesday, awarded N10 million compensation to the deposed Emir and against the respondents comprising the police, the State Security Service (SSS) and the Attorney-General of Kano State.
Justice Chikere also ordered them to tender a public apology to him in two national dailies.
She held that the Emirate Council Law, 2019, relied on by the Kano State Government to send Sanusi out of Kano Emirate was in conflict with the Nigerian constitution.
She explained that the Nigerian constitution is supreme and any law that is inconsistent with it shall be null and void.
The judge declared that the former emir had the right to live anywhere, including Kano State, as enshrined in the country’s constitution.
The Kano State Government had on March 9, 2020 deposed Sanusi after which security agents moved him to Abuja.
The Kano State Government, through Usman Alhaji, the secretary to the state government, had said in a statement, that Sanusi was dethroned because of insubordination. He was later banished to Awe, Nasarawa State, where he was detained in a private home until March 13 when he obtained an interim order of the court for his release from house arrest.
But following an ex parte application filed on his behalf by his team of lawyers shortly after the banishment, the judge, Justice Chikere, ordered his immediate release.
Although the deposed emir had since been released after the court ruling, he continued to pursue the suit raising the issues of how his rights were violated with his detention and banishment.