30 May 2012

Nigeria: Army, Family Trade Words Over Driver's Detention

Kaduna — Nigerian Army is trading words with the family of one Yusuf Abdullahi over illegal detention and whereabouts of Yusuf who was arrested over two months ago in Kaduna on his way from Abuja to Kano.

The family of the detained person dragged the military to a Federal High Court, Kaduna over unlawful detention and infringement of fundamental human rights. Yusuf was arrested on March 13, 2012 at a military checkpoint and since then he has not been seen thereafter even after the court order that the military should produce him in court.

The court ordered the Army to produce the detained person in court on May 15, through an order dated 7th May, 2012 in suit no: FHC/KD/CS/33/2012 upon the motion ex-parte and filed on 3rd May, 2012. But the military authorities didn't bring the applicant on the said date.

Counsel to the family, Barrister Mustapha Aliyu, explained how the applicant's ordeal started: "A driver one Yusuf was sent by his boss (Ali Adamu) to Kano to deliver some messages but incidentally along the road by the toll gate in Kaduna, he was stopped at an Army check point. The car was checked and nothing was found but a certain Major Egbulem said the driver and the vehicle be taken to Abuja. And we really don't know why and since his (Yusuf) arrest on 13 March, 2012 nobody has seen him.

When contacted, the Assistant Director, Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman, said Yusuf Abdullahi was indeed arrested within the One Division's area of operational responsibility on issues that border on the security, saying that "he is however at liberty to go to the court of law if he feels aggrieved."

The presiding judge, Justice Lucia Ojukwu adjourned the case to today for judgment.

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