An FCT High Court on Monday ordered First Bank Plc to pay N160,000 from the Nigeria Police account to a businessman, Tijani Olabode, as compensation for unlawful detention.
The amount include N100,000 as general damages against the police for breaching Olabode’s human rights, N10,000 as out-of-pocket expenses and N50,000 as additional cost of executing the garnishee order.
Delivering ruling, Justice Angela Otaluka, made the `garnishee order absolute,` following the inability of the police to pay compensation to Olabode, based on an earlier order of the court.
Unlawful arrest; Police to pay N160,000 to victim as damages
The police had failed to comply with an earlier order of the court, dated Jan. 31, 2012 to pay the plaintiff (applicant) the sum of N100,00 for unlawfully arresting him and, thereby, infringing on his fundamental rights.
Otaluka had in the judgment ordered that the plaintiff was entitled to N100,000 as general damages against the police for breach of his fundamental rights and N10,000 as out-of- pocket expenses.
Olabode had sued the Inspector-General of Police for his arrest and detention at the Lugbe Divisional Police Station on May 12, 2011.
Olabode’s Counsel, Mr Festus Akpoghalino, had in his submission said that the defendants breached his client’s fundamental human rights by arresting, detaining and torturing him without a court warrant.
The plaintiff’s counsel had said that his client was hand-cuffed, tortured, wounded and detained in the same cell with hardened criminals without reason, following which he was hospitalised.
The plaintiff had, therefore, urged the court to compel the defendants to pay him N50 million as general damages for breach of his fundamental rights and N500,000 as cost of litigation.
However, Mr Malik Taiwo, Counsel to the defendants had denied the claims of the plaintiff, although he confirmed that the police arrested him.
Taiwo told the court that the plaintiff was arrested in order to investigate allegations of criminal trespass and intimidation, obstructing the police while executing their duty and resisting arrest.