The federal government of Nigeria says it is keeping Sambo Dasuki, former national security adviser (NSA), for his own safety and that of the country.
Dodo Kabiru, counsel to the government, made the submission while trying to justify the continued detention of the former NSA, who has been in the custody of the Department of State Services (DSS) since he was arrested in December.
Dasuki, who got a court ruling in his favour, fulfilled his bail conditions, but the government refused to release him, forcing him to file a suit against the government at the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) court.
The court had asked the government to justify the continued detention of Dasuki.
However, Kabiru said allowing Dasuki to leave custody would not be in the best interest of the country.
“The Federal Republic of Nigeria has justified, with the evidence it has placed before the court, the detention of the applicant on ground of his own safety, and for the safety of other Nigerians by virtue of the security report received by the DSS,” he said.
“The position of the defence, which is not controverted by the applicant, is that the arms and ammunition recovered during the search is not the only arms and ammunition in the possession of the applicant.
“There is fear that he has more. There is intelligence report that some are yet to be recovered. That we fear he has more is a ground to hold him. There are on-going investigations which are revealing fresh facts concerning him.
“The right of an individual cannot supersede the security of a country when there is intelligence report to suspect the conduct of the individual. The applicant did not deny that these guns were recovered from his house.
He went on to say the federal government was justified to keep Dasuki for his own safety, owing to arms in his position.
“By Section 3 of the Firearms Act, CAP F28 LFN 2004, part one of the Schedule thereof prescribes the arms that cannot be licensed for individual’s possession. The arms found in his house fall into this category of prohibited arms.
“Since they were illegally kept by the applicant, the deduction is that they were kept for illegal purposes.”