Following the ruling of the Oyo State High Court, which granted him N20 billion in damages, the Federal Government may bring a new lawsuit against Yoruba secessionist activist Sunday Adeyemo (also known as Sunday Igboho).
Abubakar Malami, the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in New York that the federal government has the option of appealing the judgment or filing a new case.
The money was given by the judge, Ladiran Akintola, as “exemplary and aggravated damages” against the AGF and the State Security Service (SSS) for the July 1 invasion of Adeyemo’s home in Ibadan.
However, Malami stated that the federal government’s position on the judgment was based on “law and jurisdiction.”
“As far as this matter is concerned, which court is it that has the jurisdiction to determine it? And as you rightly know, obedient to court orders and court judgments,” he said.
“But then you have to understand within the context of such obedience that there are associated rights and interests that are vested in the Federal Government.
“Inclusive of rights of appealing against a judgment, inclusive of right to file an application for settingaside the purported judgment and order.
“And indeed, inclusive of the possibility of filling a fresh action if indeed the jurisdiction of the court that was alleged to have indeed handed that judgment is an issue.
“So, we are doing the needful in terms of looking at the law as it exists and then working within the context of the law in ensuring that justice is done as far as the contending issues between the parties are concerned,’’ the minister explained.
NAN recalls that Igboho’s lawyer, Yomi Alliyu, SAN, had launched a N500 billion fundamental human rights enforcement suit in Oyo State against the AGF, SSS, and the SSS Director over the July 1 raid of his residence in Ibadan.
During the event, Alliyu claimed that his client’s house and cars were damaged, and that two of the property’s residents were slain by SSS operatives.
However, AGF’s lawyer, Abdullah Abubakar, contended in court that there was no evidence that the blood visible in the video footage presented by Alliyu belonged to a human being.
Abubakar further claimed that nothing in the video clip indicated that the residence that was attacked belonged to Igboho or that the invasion was tied to the AGF.
Adeyemo is still being held in the Republic of Benin, where he was apprehended while attempting to flee to Germany a few weeks ago.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN