Onamade Appeals Lagos State High Judgement
A Lagos-based businessman and cheiftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Honourable Oluwatosin Onamade has challenged a court ruling delivered by Justice A.F. Pokanu of the Lagos State High Court, dismissing his fundamental human rights infringement application by filling an appeal at the Court of Appeal, Lagos.
Following the alleged harassment by men of the Nigeria police, Onamade filed an action at the Lagos State High Court, Ikorodu division seeking the enforcement of his fundamental human rights to dignity of human person, personal liberty, freedom of movement, and right to property.
Joined as respondents in the matter are Deputy Inspector General of Police (Force Intelligence Bureau, Area 10, Garki, Abuja), DCP Eloho Okpoziakpo (Force Intelligence Bureau, Area 10, Garki, Abuja), ASP Abubarkar Inwanfero, I.P.O. Force Intelligence Bureau,Area 10, Garki, Abuja, and Fatiu Jimoh Salisu.
The applicant in the fundamental right suit prayed the court for the following reliefs;
1.A declaration that the search and invasion of the his house on the 2nd day of July, 2021 at No. 1, Oluwatosin Onamade Street, Elemu, Oke-Eletu, Ikorodu, Lagos State by the respondents without search warrant is unlawful, illegal and unconstitutional in that it violates his fundamental right of dignity of human person, personal liberty, freedom of movement and right to property guaranteed by section 34, 35, 39,43, & 44 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (As amended) as well as Articles 4, 5, 6,. &7 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act Cap 10 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 1990.
2.A perpetual injunction restraining the Respondents whether by themselves, their Officers,Agents,Delegates, Servants,and/or Privies from arresting, detaining,harassing,molesting and/or intimidating the applicant.
3.The sum of N10, 000,000.00 (Ten Million Naira) as compensation against the respondents jointly and severally for breach of his fundamental human rights by the respondents.
However, Justice Pokanu while ruling on the application held that there was no merit to the application filed by the complainant.
Disatisfied with the ruling of the court, Lagos State High Court,Onamade through his counsel, Idowu
Orekunrin chellenged the ruling of Justice Pokanu at the court of Appeal.
In the appeal No: IKD/1153MFHR/2021, Onamade said the judge erred in law when the court takes into account matters which it ought not to have taken into account.
Onamade in the Notice of Appeal, further stated that “the lower court erred in law when it held that the Applicant affidavit in paragraph 20 offends Section 115 of the Evidence Act on the ground that it did not disclose the name of the “team of Police Officers” that informed him that the 4th respondent was granted administrative bail.”
Also, the Appellant averred to that the trial court was in grave error when it held that the applicant failed to lead cogent and credible evidence to prove and establish the search and invasion on his residence on the 2nd day of July, 2021.
Consequently, Onamade asked the Court of Appeal for the following reliefs.
1.An Order allowing his appeal
2.An Order that the judgement of the lower court was perverse and miscarriage of justice
3.An Order setting aside the cost of N200, 000.00 awarded against the Appellant in favour of 1st – 3rd Respondents and the cost of N200, 000.00 awarded against the Appellant and in favour of the 4th Respondent by the lower court as same is baseless.
4.An Order entering judgement in favour of the Appellant.
Onamade’s travail began when he reported an incident to the police in April last year when some suspected thugs / cultists allegedly invaded his office, ,Western Funeral Home Limited, in Ijede, Ikorodu area of Lagos State.
During the invasion by the hoodlums numbering about 10 one Mr. Ifeanyi Etunmuse Godfrey was killed while Onamade bother ,Oluwafemi Onamade was inflicted with severe machete cut.
Four out of the suspects namely Atunrase Sodiq Omolabi ‘M’ 28 years, Shittu Michael Olawale ‘M’ 28 years, Olaide Opeifa ‘M’ 40′ years, and Olanrewaju Adebiyi aka Maja ‘M’ 35 years, are currently are currently facing prosecusion for Murder, unlawful society, grievous harm, felony among others.
Speaking on phone to our reporter, Onamade said he instructed his legal team to institute the case, after he had gone through series of dehumanizing treatment in the hands of men of the Nigeria Police.
Onamade highlighted moments of illegal and unwarranted arrests, torture, coerced statements amongst many sponsored encounters he faced.
“On several occasions, we have spotted some unidentified gunmen suspected to be operatives of the Nigeria Police Force invading my house in desperate bid to arrest and kidnap me. A tenant living in my house at Ikorodu area of Lagos State was manhandled by these men when he could not provide details of my whereabouts during one of their invasions.