Alleged Illegal Detention: PhD holder Slams N100m Suit On IGP, 4 Others

IGP Baba Alikhali

A PhD holder, Chibuike Clement have asked a Lagos High Court, to order Inspector-General of Police (IGP) to pay him the sum of N100 million, for allegedly detained him unjustly and beyond the period recognize by the law.

Chibuike also asked the court to for an order of perpetual injunction restraining the IGP and four others, their agents, privies and servants, from further detaining him or in any way limit his rights to human dignity, personal liberty and freedom of movement contrary to the provisions of Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) respectively. 

The applicant asked for the above and other reliefs in a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed before the court through his lawyer, Barrister Ademola Olabiyi.

The applicant’s application is pursuant to Order 2 Rule 2 of the fundamental Rights Enforcement Procedure Rules 2009 Article 5, 6, 7 and 12 Of The African Charter On Human And Peoples Right Ratification and Enforcement Act Laws Of The Federation Cap 10 2004, and  Sections 34, 35, 36, 41(1) and 46 1 Of The Constitution Of The Federal Republic Of Nigeria, 1999.

Listed as IGP’s co-respondents in the suit are: CP Nneka Ayansinti (COP, PSFU) Milverton, Ikoyi, Lagos; ACP Anthony O. Okosun (Team Leader); The Lagos State’s Attorney-General and Oladipo Okuntola (Trading under the style and name of Aqua 10 Nigeria Ltd).

Other reliefs sought against the respondents are: “a declaration that the first and second respondents have no powers to unlawfully detain the him beyond 24 hours under the provisions of Nigerian Constitution as Amended and the that he is continuously held on in the Police Custody even after the refusal of the remand application at the Magistrate Court. The Applicant without preferring a Charge is still at the Police custody for more than three weeks and this have engendered the violations of his human rights as provided for in Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) as well as under Articles 4, 5, 6 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement Act, Cap 10) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004. 

“A declaration that his arrest and detention without justified curse for his detention even after the refusal of the remand order application is illegal and thus contravenes the Constitutional rights of the Applicant as provided for in Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) as well as under Articles 4, 5, 6 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement Act, Cap 10) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.

“A declaration that the unjustified detention for over three weeks of the Applicant by men and officers of the second respondent at the instruction of the fifth respondent is a gross violation of his constitutional Rights as contained in Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) as well as under Articles 4, 5, 6 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement Act, Cap 10) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004. 

“A declaration that the ceaseless harassments and intended humiliations of the Applicant without having committed any crime known to law or suspected to have committed any is unlawful, illegal and unconstitutional contrary to the provisions of Sections 34(1), 35(1) and 41(1) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) as well as under Articles 4, 5, 6 and 12 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement Act, Cap 10,) Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2004.”

Chibuike in an affidavit in support of the application stated that “I commenced this suit via a Motion on Notice dated November 14, 2022, for the enforcement of my Fundamental Human Rights which suit is presently before this Honourable Court. 

“That I was arrested in Ghana on the order of the first to third respondents on instruction of the fifth respondent as at October 19, 2022, I was later brought to Nigeria on October 25, 2022, by the men of the second Respondent on the instruction of the fifth respondent on handcuff from my place of work in Ghana like a common criminal. 

“That all my travelling documents have since been taken from me by the men of the second Respondent on the order of the fifth respondent, whom I have never come across in my life neither have I done any business with him in my life. 

“That ever since I have been detained by the men of second respondent on the instruction of the fifth respondent, I have been subjected to serious humiliation and harassment by the men of second respondent and the fifth respondent, as I was brought out from the cell where i have been kept to the office of the Investigating Police Officer (IPO) Inspector Ezekiel Pankyes to be questioned by the fifth respondent at about 8pm without the present of my lawyer. 

“That from my findings, I was made to know that the fifth respondent had a transaction with one Mr. James Abidemi and his company referred to ‘Diamond Smith De-great Universal Petroleum Corporation’ and that the matter has since been charged to Court in Charge No: FHC/L/483c/2022. 

“That the men of the second respondent in conjunction with the second respondent are asking me to pay for the failed transaction that occurred between James Abidemi and the fifth respondent, the transaction that I do know anything about nor even knowing any of the parties involved. 

“That the men of the second respondents for over three weeks have detained me without charging me before any court of jurisdiction but rather applied to the Magistrate Court for a Remand Order which was refused and not granted. And that the second respondents through her men handcuff me from my place of work in Ghana like a ‘wanted criminal’ and ever since detained me without being charged till date but the only approach the men of the second respondent could do was to file a an Application for a Remand Order which was refused by His Hon. Alogba at the Magistrate Court. 

“That I briefed Ademola Olabiyi Esq. my Counsel at the Police station about the ugly situation and the harassment done by the Police Officers at the instance of the fifth respondent who is using his connection with the men of the second respondent to perpetuate the unlawful detention. 

“That I have never had contact or any contractual relationship with the fifth respondent nor knowing him from anywhere before this action. And that I am a responsible family man with Children that we all reside in Ghana and as a result of the unlawful detention, psychological torture, by way of handcuff had ridiculed my family especially to my beloved wife and children. 

“That I have not committed any offence as no charge has been preferred against me neither have I been told of any offence committed. And that all efforts for my lawyer to get me released on administrative bail were frustrated by men of the second respondent at the instance of the fifth respondent who I have never met nor had any contract with whatsoever. 

“That I have to file a fundamental Human Right through my lawyer to seck reliefs from the honourable court and seck the timely intervention of the court to save the situation I am facing with the men of the second respondent. 

“That unless this Honourable Court grant this Application the first to fifth respondents will continuing breaching my fundamental human right. And that the interest of justice would best be attained by the grant of this application.”

Police and respondents are yet to file any response to the suit.