From Yusuf Mairiga Shekarau, Jos
The Plateau State High Court has ordered the Nigerian Army to pay the sum of N5million for unlawful detention of Alhaji Salmanu Bature Muhammad.
Justice Daniel Longji, of the State High Court 5, gave the order yesterday in a ruling on suit no. PLA/J289/2019 filed before his court.
The applicants had under order 2, rules 2 and 3 of the fundamental rights enforcement procedure, chapter IV of the constitution, challenged the Nigerian Army, the Chief of Defense Staff, the Commander of Operation Save Haven and Major PA Omoniyi, serving under sector 5 of the OPSH at Kura falls in Barikin Ladi, over an alleged unlawful arrest and detention of the applicants sometimes in May this year.
The presiding judge consequently declared that; “the 4th respondent neglected to appear and give oral evidence, therefore, the counter affidavit filed by his counsel, has no merit and it is hereby dismissed.”
“The respondent have no rights to arrest and detained the applicant, in Nigerian laws it is not allowed,” he ruled.
Justice Longji further ruled that the military should not rearrest, detain or harass the applicant.
“For the respondent to arrest and detained the applicant over an alleged offence committed by someone, it is not only the illegal but it is barbaric, he ordered.”
The justice ordered the military to pay the sum of N5m to compensate the damage caused Alhaji Salmanu Bature Muhammad.
The counsel to the applicant, Barr. Idris lauded the ruling, describing it as a leap forward in prevailing justice.