Court Orders SSS To Release Detained APC Data Centre Staffs

A Federal High Court sitting in Lagos, yesterday, ordered the release of five detained staffs of the All Progressives Congress, APC, arrested by operatives of the Department of State Security, DSS.The detained staffers include Chinedu Atuche, Fayemi Olaposi, Augustine Onuchukwu, Ebun Ilori, and Esther Enemy.They were arrested on November 22, when officers of the DSS, accompanied by the police, raided a building which houses the APC’s data office at Allen Avenue, in Ikeja, Lagos. The DSS said the raid was informed by intelligence report that some unwholesome activities were being perpetrated within the said building.The court ordered their release in its ruling in a fundamental rights suit by the applicants, seeking enforcement of their fundamental rights. Respondents in the suit were the Police and the DSS.Trial judge, Justice Mohammed Yunusa in his ruling, held that a citizen could not be detained for more than 48 hours without being charged to court.He added that if there was any need to extend the period, the law enforcement agency shall be required to file an application for a review of the period before a court of law. The court said that the detention of the applicants for more than a week without being charged to court, was unjustifiable.“The arrest and detention of a person for the purpose of obtaining information is clearly a violation of Section 35 of the constitution. It is clear that there is a clear contravention of the provisions of Section 35, since the applicants were not properly brought before a court of competent jurisdiction.“The remand order, whether valid or invalid, has exceeded the time limit permitted as reasonable, by the Section 35 of the Constitution. The same arrest and detention of the applicant is illegal and they are hereby released,” Justice Yunusa said.* The judge also restrained the DSS from further arresting the applicants, pending the determination of the substantive suit.,* He also ordered the applicants not to travel outside the court’s jurisdiction without approval and adjourned further hearing in the matter till January 19, 2015.


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

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