Army sued over alleged breach of fundamental human rights
• Court orders release of detained journalist
The Nigerian Army has been charged before Justice Vera Venda of the FCT High Court, Jabi, over alleged breach of the fundamental human rights of four persons.
The applicants, who alleged breach of their rights, are Osisomo Ake, Daboy Clinton, Ebikimi Mathew and Bubaiyenumubofa James.The applicants’ counsels said they were arrested by the Nigerian Army in Okaki community of Rivers State sometimes in January 2016.
According to the applicants’ lawyer, Gabriel Egbule, they were arrested over allegations of terrorism and vandalism of oil pipelines in the state.Egbule said that the applicants were flown to Abuja in August 2016 and since their arrest had been in the custody of the army.
According to the lawyer, “the army is now being charged to court for breach and enforcement of their fundamental human rights because it failed to charge the applicants since they were arrested.”
At the sitting yesterday, one of the applicants’ lawyer, Mr. Osaze Ebie, informed the court that the defendant had served it a notice of preliminary objection, which it had also replied with a counter objection.
Counsel to the defendant, Bala Adukwu, prayed the court for more time to enable the defendant study and reply to the counter affidavit it received from the applicants.
Adukwu said that the applicants raised new issues, which the defendant needed more time to react to.Justice Venda thus adjourned the matter to February 15 for hearing of the preliminary objection.
In Borno, a high court sitting in Maiduguri, yesterday ordered the police to release the publisher of National Trail Newspaper, Mr. Inuwa Bwala, being detained by the police over alleged attempts to murder the incumbent Deputy Governor Usman Durkwa.
Bwala, a journalist and former information commissioner and his driver were arrested in Abuja by policemen from the Borno State Police Command and were detained in Maiduguri for about two weeks.
The police yesterday also said Bwala was being detained over attempt to murder his former colleague and member of the State Executive Council (SEC), Usman Durkwa, now the Deputy Governor, forcing the accused person to seek his release by enforcing his fundamental human rights.
Justice Hadiza Ali Jos of Borno State High Court, No. 14 said that the police had violated the laws of Nigeria by detaining Bwala and his driver, Muhammed Audu, more than two days without trial.The court also questioned why the police disregarded the accused health condition and kept him in detention without trial.
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