Human rights lawyer, Femi Falana on Monday said the Nigerian military had no power to declare civillians ‘wanted’.
He said this while criticizing the decision of the Army to declare three persons ‘wanted’ in connection to a video of the abducted Chibok girls.
In a statement on Monday, Falana said such powers were only with the Nigeria Police Force and the State Security Service.
“Thus, by declaring the three persons wanted without any legal authority the army has usurped the statutory powers of both the Police and the SSS.
“In the process it has breached the fundamental rights of the ‘suspects’ to personal liberty, dignity of the person and fair hearing guaranteed by the Constitution,” he said.
He further said, “Realizing that we are under a constitutional democracy which requires that the infringement of the rights of any citizen be justified in law, the army has relied on the provisions of the country’s anti terrorism legislation.
“Since the wanted persons are not serving military personnel who are subject to service law they cannot be investigated or tried under the Armed Forces Act Cap A20 LFN, 2004.
“Furthermore, under the Terrorism Prevention Act 2011 as amended the army has not been authorized to perform any duty whatsoever.”
The Nigerian Army had recently declared a journalist, Ahmad Salkida, a lawyer, Aisha Wakil and Ahmed Bolori wanted in connection to terrorist group Boko Haram.