Home CRIME Illegal detention: Army to pay N11m to 11 persons

Illegal detention: Army to pay N11m to 11 persons

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Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai

The Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, has been ordered to pay N11 million to some Gombe State indigenes detained illegally by the Army.

Each of the detained persons is to receive the sum of N1 million.

The order was given by a judge of the Federal High Court, Abuja, Ijeoma Ojukwu, following an application to that effect by the affected persons who have been detained illegally since July 6.

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The court also ordered the release of the detainees.

The affected persons are James Yusuf, Ishaya Ali Poshiya, Nehemiah Yohanna Poshiya, Husseini Poshiya, Hamma Poshiya, Yusuf Mafindi, Yila Boyi, James Bare, Ezekiel Dandaudu, Ali Ishaku and Ilya Bala.

The other respondent in the suit is the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami.

The people were said to have been arrested by officers of the Nigerian Army on July 6 after the murder of one David Stephen who was said to have been attacked on his farm by some unknown persons in Shongom in Gombe State.

The detainees ran into trouble when they found the corpse and attempted to return it home.

They were arrested with the corpse and detained since then.

In the verdict, the judge described the arrest and detention of the eleven people as a violation of their rights.

Said the judge:  “The long detention and torture, without detention order, of the Applicants since July 6, 2018, by servants and agents of the 1st defendant, COAS, is illegal and unconstitutional and is a violation of the applicants’ fundamental rights as enshrined under Sections 34 and 35 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.

“The 1st Respondent shall pay the sum of N11, 000, 000 (Eleven Million Naira) only to the applicants (jointly) as damages for the breach of the applicants’ rights under Sections 34 and 35 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999.”

She added:  “No circumstances whatsoever may be invoked as a justification for torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

“All law enforcement officers must conform to accepted norms and rule of law in the discharge of their statutory duties.’’

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