The Senator-elect for Ogun East District, Buruji Kashamu, is yet to appear in court for his extradition proceedings scheduled for Monday (today) at the Federal High Court, Lagos.
As at 2 p.m., neither Mr. Kashamu nor any of his aides had left his Lagos home where operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency had laid a siege since the early hours of Saturday.
“Senator-elect, Buruji Kashamu has failed to appear in court from his house where he is being closely monitored by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency,” the NDLEA said in a statement issued Monday afternoon.
“The Agency is working hard to ensure that he submits himself to the due process of the law,” Mitchell Ofoyeju, the agency’s spokesperson said.
“His house remained cordoned by anti-narcotic officers pending his appearance in court.”
On Monday morning, Mr. Kashamu’s supporters besieged the court’s premises to protest his planned arrest and possible extradition to the U.S. where he is wanted for drug-related offences.
The supporters, mostly elderly women and a few youth, purportedly arrived from Ijebu Igbo bearing placards demanding his release.
Some of the placards protesters displayed read ‘Kashamu is Innocent,’ ‘We need him in Nigeria not U.S,’ ‘We say no to illegal house arrest of Kashamu.’
Speaking to journalists on behalf of the supporters, Yemi Akinwomi, a former Ogun State Secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party said Mr. Kashamu rekindled the PDP’s relevance in the state, adding that his house arrest is an abuse of power.
“If it is America that tendered the extradition request, where is the extradition request?” Mr. Akinwomi asked.
“These people forgot that the world is watching us. Where is it done all over the world that you are gong to arrest a man, a highly placed person, a senator-elect without a warrant of arrest and you force yourself into his house, into his private life and you have held him captive for the past 75 hours without any paper from the court? ”
On Saturday, the NDLEA said it had received a formal request for extradition from the Embassy of the United States of America.
“Kashamu has been a target of both the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for over 20 years and was indicted in the Northern District of Illinois, United States, on charges brought against him by ICE,” the NDLEA said in a statement Saturday.
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