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Alleged rights violation: Businessman sues I-G, others for N500m

A businessman, Musa Saliu, has filed a N500 million suit against the Inspector-General (I-G) of Police and others over allegations bordering on violation of his fundamental human rights.

Others joined in the suit filed by his lawyer, Femi Motojesi at the FCT High Court, include the DIG, Force Criminal Intelligence and Investigation Department and Funmilola Florence Olorunfemi as 2nd to 3rd defendants respectively.

The action is a fundamental rights enforcement suit brought under Sections 34, 35, 41 and 46; Articles 5 and 6 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights Cap 10 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004.

Saliu alleged that the police falsely declared him a wanted person in a land dispute in their Special Police Gazette Bulletin.

He, therefore, prayed the court to declare that the publication of his picture and name in the bulletin as a wanted person with Ref No: CB: 3510/LX/FHQ/SEB/ABJ/T.7/Vo. 1/20 amounted to the violation of his fundamental rights.

He submitted that the police lacked such powers “to engage in the act of debt recovery for the 3rd defendant (Olorunfemi) who is a subscriber to the applicant’s (Saliu’s) estate under construction.”

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The applicant prayed the court to order the police to unfreeze the account number: 1000129689 with Globus Bank belonging to Emperor City Integrated Limited where he is the alter ego and signatory for being a violation of his fundamental rights.

Saliu, who is also a politician and former New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP)’s governorship candidate in Kogi in 2023 poll, is demanding the sum of N500 million in damages for the violation of his constitutionally guaranteed rights to privacy and dignity of the human person, personal liberty, and freedom of movement when the police declared him wanted.

Saliu, in the suit marked: FCT/ CV/2839/24, is further asking the court to order the police to issue an apology published in the Special Police Gazette Bulletin and two national dailies.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that a certified true copy of the suit, dated June 14, was made available to newsmen on Sunday in Abuja.

According to the estate developer, the dispute arose after Olorunfemi paid N25 million to subscribe to one of his houses being built but work halted after the FCT Department of Development Control demolished the estate.

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He said Olorunfemi invited the police to recover her money even after he had notified all the subscribers to the estate that he was making efforts to resolve the issue and return to site.

He is contending that the relationship between him and Olorunfemi is civil in nature and has no criminal connotation to warrant the police delving into it.

Saliu submitted that inviting him for questioning, blocking his account and publishing his picture and details as a wanted person in the Police Gazette Bulletin were unlawful.

The matter is yet to be assigned to a judge.(NAN)

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