Nigeria: Court Awards Damages Against Police Over Rights Violation

25 September 2018

A Lagos high court has ordered the police to pay N350, 000 damages to one Mr Godwin Femin over the violation of his rights.

The trial judge, Mrs E. Alakija make the order in a judgment delivered in suit no LD/7209MFHR/18 filed by the claimant (Femin) against the Inspector General of Police and the Commissioner of Police.

The court held that the police in the exercise of its statutory duties exceeded the time period allowed by the rules of court.

Femin, a domestic staff of a commissioner of police serving in Imo State was arrested and detained on August 3, on a theft allegation, which is ordinarily bailable and was not charged to court.

The claimant said he was subjected to some inhuman and degrading treatments, which contravenes his right to the dignity of human person contrary to section 34 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria.

In a 16 paragraph affidavit, he averred that his boss accused him of theft, arrested him and took him to the Interpol section in Alagbon, Ikoyi; on the accusation that he stole from the defendants N200 million and $2,000 cash kept in a safe in his apartment.

The claimant alleged that he has been in detention since August 3, contrary to section 35 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria as amended and Article of the African charter on Human and Peoples Rights Ratification and Enforcement Act.

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