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Cameroon- Nigeria: Repatriation Treaty Exists

Emmanuel KENDEMEH | 01-02-2018 10:58

The treaty adds to the Police and Judicial Cooperation Agreements signed since March 1972.

There has been much talk and speculations since Nigerian authorities repatriated and handed over to the Cameroon government  on January 29, 2018 some 47 Cameroonians arrested in Nigeria suspected of acts of terrorism in relation to the crisis in the North West and South West Regions. Communication Minister Issa Tchiroma Bakary who announced the information in a press declaration in Yaounde said the suspects have been handed to the judicial department. Since the arrest, repatriation  and handing over of the people, many questions are being asked  on the legality and judicial bases of the decision by the Nigerian government. The answers are found in the  repatriation treaty and cooperation agreements signed between the two countries.

Repatriation Treaty.

Cameroon and Nigeria signed a Repatriation Treaty as far back as February 6, 1963. The explanatory statement to the treaty states that it is intended to consolidate existing friendly relations between the two countries.  The treaty also aims to enable the authorities of  Cameroon and Nigeria to take required measures so that delinquents or criminals from one country who have taken refuge in the other should not stay unpunished. The two countries therefore,  have to reciprocally agree on the repatriation for crimes stated. The treaty makes provisions for every specificity on the repatriation process.  

Judicial Cooperation Agreement.

The Judicial Cooperation Agreement between the government of Cameroon and that of Nigeria was signed in Lagos on March 27, 1992. The agreement stresses the commitment of the authorities of the two countries to share on a regular basis information on the administration of justice and judicial decisions. The agreement makes provisions for transmission of judicial documents, deliverance and execution of commissions and has  a chapter on witnesses.

Police Cooperation

The Police Cooperation between Cameroon and Nigeria was signed in Lagos on March 27, 1972. The agreement states that senior police officials of the two countries can carry out exchange courtesy visits with the aim to share information  on crimes and methods of  finding out crimes.  According to the agreement, intelligence sharing visits also have to be carried out between senior police officials of the Cameroon and Nigeria. There is also supposed to be mutual intelligence gathering  on request  on criminality and respective methods of detecting crimes. Copies of the publications on the intelligence from the respective Police Services have to be communicated.

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