Former Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Bala Mohammed, on Thursday got a favourable court judgement in a suit he filed against the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over violation of his fundamental rights.
Justice Hussein Baba-Yusuf of the FCT High Court, who delivered judgment in the matter ordered the EFCC to pay Mohammed N5 million as compensation for detaining him illegally.
The EFCC had kept the former minister, who served under the immediate past government of Goodluck Jonathan in its custody from October 24, 2016, to November 29, 2016.
But after he was granted bail on November 29, by Baba-Yusuf on the provisions of Sections 165 and 158 (b) of the Administration of Justice Act 2015, the anti-graft agency kept him in its custody until December 8, 2016, claiming that it acted based on a petition against him from a member of the public.
But not happy with the treatment meted out to him, Mohammed in a motion on notice filed on November 16 before Justice Baba-Yusuf, prayed for the enforcement of his fundamental rights violated by the EFCC.
Ruling on the matter on Thursday, Baba-Yusuf stated that while the detention from October 24 till November 29 was lawful, his being remanded in prison was illegal.
He said, “The detention is illegal and infringes on his personal liberty which is against the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. I, therefore, declare that the detention of the applicant is unlawful and fragrant violation of his personal liberty.
“I also declare that the applicant is entitled to bail by the respondent and a compensation for the infringement of the applicant’s right be accessed at five million naira.”
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