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Court Orders NSCDC to pay Lawyers 27 Million Naira for Brutality
They were subjected to brutal treatment, including being slapped, beaten, punched, dragged on the floor, and thrown into a cell in the NSCDC office.
NSCDC has been ordered to pay a sum of 27000000 after some of its officers brutalised lawyers, PIJAlance has learnt.NSCDC is also expected present a public apology after the payment of 27000000 to the lawyers.
On Tuesday, January 17th, 2023, history was made in the legal community as two young lawyers, Stanley Amarachi Nnabuo and Boluwatife John Sanya, achieved a landmark victory in a fundamental rights enforcement suit against the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps, Oyo State Command.
The judgment, delivered by Honourable Justice Owolabi sitting in High Court 12 in Ibadan, awarded the Respondents a total sum of 27 million Naira to be paid by NSCDC.
The incident that led to the lawsuit occurred in October of 2022, when the two lawyers, Nnabuo and Sanya, went to the NSCDC Oyo State Command’s Office to secure the release of their client, Mr Banjo, who had been unlawfully detained.
The NSCDC had arrested Mr Banjo on allegations made by his estranged wife, who is an officer of the NSCDC, that Mr Banjo had refused to release his daughter, who had come to spend holidays with her father.
However, the court found that Mr Banjo had not committed any crime and that the act of retaining custody of his child after the holidays did not constitute an offence under the law.
Furthermore, the court noted that it was the 8-year-old girl who had insisted that she did not want to go back to her mother.
The illegal detention of Mr Banjo was not the only violation committed by the NSCDC. The lawyers who went to secure Mr Banjo’s release were subjected to brutal treatment, including being slapped, beaten, punched, dragged on the floor, and thrown into a cell in the NSCDC office.
This type of police brutality against civilians, including lawyers, has become a growing concern in Nigeria. Unfortunately, this is not an isolated incident and serves as a reminder of the recent killing of a Lagos lawyer, Mrs Bolanle Raheem, by an officer of the Nigerian Police Force on December 25th, 2022.
In his erudite judgment, Honourable Justice Owolabi granted the sum of N27,000,000 collectively in the two cases instituted by the lawyers and ordered the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps to tender a public apology.
This landmark victory serves as a deterrent and sends a clear message that disrespect towards lawyers by uniformed men will no longer be tolerated or overlooked.
It is a significant step towards the restoration of dignity for lawyers and a reminder of the importance of upholding the rule of law and protecting the rights of citizens.