29 November 2012

Nigeria: My Children Died in JTF Custody in Maiduguri - Father

Maiduguri — Two brothers, Babagana Mustapha and Hassan Mustapha held by men of the Joint Task Force (JTF) in Borno State have died while in their custody, father of the boys told a Maiduguri high court yesterday.

Our reporter gathered that the two boys were arrested and detained since April this year by soldiers during house to house search in Shehuri north area of Maiduguri.

The father of the two brothers, Mustapha Bukar, had earlier filed a case of enforcement of fundamental human right at a Maiduguri high court over the detention of his children.

In the suit, which was brought before Maiduguri High Court 11, the Chief of Army Staff, Inspector General of Police and the Borno State commissioner of police, were joined as co-defendants.

In the case, which was filed by Barrister Babagana Shettima on behalf of the applicants, they want the court to declare that their continuous detention without arraignment before a competent law court is illegal and void.

Also in an affidavit to support the suit the father narrated how men of the Nigerian Army raided their home in Shehuri and arrested his children.

When the case came up for hearing yesterday, the father of the deceased through his counsel told the court that his children had died in custody of the military and sought for the case to be struck.

The presiding judge, Justice Alkali Wakil Gana, then struck out the case.

Counsel to the Chief of Army Staff said he agreed with the decision to strike out the case, saying however that the children did not die in the custody of JTF, which he said is not directly under him.

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