Price of impunity

The seven men who allegedly invaded the Edo State House of Assembly have become the oppressed, because of the way the police handled their arrest and detention. Despite the widespread condemnation that trailed the invasion, a Benin High Court has found their arrest and detention unlawful, and consequently awarded N2.52 million naira in damages, against the police. The award is a lesson for the police, to deal with the rights of citizens in accordance with the due process of law.

We recall the invasion of the state assembly by suspected thugs, allegedly masterminded by sympathizers of the state governor, Godwin Obaseki, which was widely condemned by the public.  The invasion was allegedly carried out to stop the majority faction of the state house of assembly that the governor believed were not sympathetic to him, from accessing the assembly.

Those awarded damages by the high court are Wilfred Ogbewe, Igbinobono Collins, Salami Osayomore, Odion Osayande, Morgan Uwanboe, Ifeoluwa Oladele and Agbonrere Festus. They were arrested in Benin on August 6, for actions that constituted a breach of public peace, and detained for four days in Benin before being transferred to Force Headquarters, Abuja, where they were further detained for another two weeks.

Read the full article in The Nation

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