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Falana Urges Sanwo-Olu To Ensure Return Of Deported Osun Indigenes



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Human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Femi Falana, has called on Babajide Sanwo-Olu, the Governor of Lagos State, to ensure the return of citizens deported to Osun State from Lagos.

News About Nigeria reports that the call comes in response to reports indicating that the Lagos State Government deported several residents, who are indigenes of Osun State, prompting outcry and demands for justice.

In a statement released on Thursday, Falana confirmed that “317 Nigerian citizens of Osun state origin were rounded up in several parts of Lagos state and loaded into several luxury buses, which drove them to Osun state.”

Describing the deportation as illegal, Falana said the deportees fundamental human rights were violated, particularly their freedom of movement guaranteed by Section 41 of the Nigerian Constitution.

He further highlighted the contravention of Article 12(5) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, which prohibits mass expulsion targeting specific groups based on nationality, race, ethnicity, or religion.

While acknowledging that both the Lagos State Government and the police have denied involvement in the deportation, Falana urged Governor Sanwo-Olu to take urgent action to ensure the return of the deportees to Lagos State.

“The illegal deportation also contravened Article 12(5) of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, which has prohibited mass expulsion that targets national, racial, ethnic, or religious groups.

“Since the deportation of the 317 citizens was not authorised by the Lagos State government, Governor Sanwo-Olu should ensure that they are brought back to Lagos State as soon as possible,” he said.

Additionally, Falana called upon Governor Ademola Adeleke of Osun State, who has protested on behalf of the deportees, to contribute to their resettlement in Lagos State.

He also advocated for accountability, urging that officials of the Lagos State Government involved in the illegal deportation be held accountable to prevent further expulsion of vulnerable individuals from Lagos State.