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Enugu farmer sues Inspector General of Police over alleged wrongful detention

By The Rainbow
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A subsistent farmer, Mr Ubaka Omeke, has sued the Inspector General of Police, Solomon Arase, over alleged illegal detention and harassment, following a land dispute.

Joined in the suit are the Assistant Inspector General, AIG, Zone 9, Umuahia, Abia State and Messrs Willian Onoja, Chukwudi Onoja and Sunday Onoja both of Aji, Enugu Ezike in Igboeze North Local Government Area of Enugu State.

In a suit number FHC/EN/CS/310/2015 filed on his behalf by his Counsel, Emmanuel Onaeze, “in the matter of fundamental rights (enforcement procedure rules, 2009 and pursuant to sections 34(1), 35(1), (4) and (6), of the 1999 Constitution (as amended) and Article 6 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights,” at the Federal High Court, Enugu, Omeke said that he had been illegally detained at both the Divisional Police Headquarters and Zone 9 Headquarters of the Police in Umuahia over a civil matter.

He is therefore, claiming “N50 million from the defendants as exemplary, punitive, aggravated and general damages against the defendants/ respondents for their infringement of his constitutional and fundamental rights.”

In a 23- point affidavit in support of his motion, Omeke said that he was detained at the police station, Ogrute, from where he was transferred to Umuahia, where he was detained for six days based on frivolous petition written against him by the son of William Onoja, Chukwudi without being charged to court.

He further   said that he had been in hiding since September 2015, as the respondents had been “using policemen and thugs to harass, intimidate, trail and chase me in order” to take over possession of his land.

He also, stated that the police had “no jurisdiction to dabble into land dispute but have decided to descend into the arena of conflict and dance to the tune of the third, fourth and fifth respondents due to extraneous interest,” and asked the court to declare that his arrest and detention, thereby restricting his freedom of movement and subjecting him to physical and psychological torture, constituted a flagrant violation of his fundamental rights and therefore, illegal, unconstitutional, null and void as well as order a perpetual injunction restricting them from further harassment and intimidation against him.

The case has been listed for January 11 for mention.