The Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, and two other senators, Ben Murray-Bruce and Dino Melaye, on Monday have sued the inspector-General of Police and claiming N500million, over an alleged harassment they suffered during the protest they staged alongside other leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party on Friday demanding free and fair elections in 2019.
The police had invited the trio who with others led the October 5, 2018 protest to the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission.
The protesters were on their way to the Force Headquarters in Abuja when the procession was dispersed by policemen with tear gas.
But instead of complying with the invitation on Monday as requested by the police, the trio jointly filed a fundamental human rights enforcement suit marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1095 before the Federal High Court in Abuja.
With the IG and the Commissioner of Police of the Federal Capital Territory Command, joined as the two defendants, the plaintiffs asked the court to declare their invitation by the police as illegal, unconstitutional, and a gross violation of their rights guaranteed by sections 34 and 35 of the Constitution, and Article 11 of the African Charter on Peoples’ and Human Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act.
Describing the invitation as harassment and intimidation, the plaintiffs asked the court to declare it as a violation of their rights guaranteed under sections 34, 35, 39 and 41 of the Constitution as well as Article 11 of the ACPHRREA.
They maintained that their protest was peaceful.
They, therefore, asked the court to set aside “the purported invitation of the applicants by the agents of the 1st and 2nd respondents with respect to the lawful and peaceful protest organised by the members of the Peoples Democratic Party on October 5, 2018.”
They also sought an order directing the two respondents “to jointly and severally pay the applicants the sum of N500, 000,000 only, the same being the pecuniary and exemplary damages arising from the humiliation, intimidation, harassment and unlawful attempt to arrest the applicant by the agents of the 1st and 2nd respondents.”
“They also sought an order of perpetual injunction restraining the defendants jointly and severally or their agents, privies, servants however called from any further unlawful harassment and unlawful attempt to arrest and detain the applicants in connection with their lawful and peaceful demonstration at the office of the Independent National Electoral Commission office on October 5, 2018.”
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