A Lagos-based activist and legal practitioner, Mr. Olukoya Ogungbeje has filed a N50 billion suit against President Muhammadu Buhari, the Department of State Services (DSS) and its Director-General, Lawal Daura over alleged violation of the rights of some judges whose houses were raided and arrested between October 8 and 9, 2016.
Other defendants named in the suit are Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, and the National Judicial Council (NJC). Ogungbeje alleged that the clampdown and arrest, without recourse to the NJC, was unlawful and amounted to humiliating them.
According to the Daily Sun, he said the DSS operation violated the rights of judges under sections 33, 34, 35, 36, and 41 of the 1999 Constitution. Among others, he seeks an order awarding N50 billion against the defendants as “general and exemplary damages.”
He also sought to be awarded N2m as the cost of the suit.
He also sought an order compelling the DSS to return to the judges the sums of money recovered from them.
He also sought perpetual injunction restraining the defendants from arresting, inviting, intimidating, or harrassing the judges with respect to the case.
But Ogungbeje’s suit is restricted to five of the arrested judges who are still in active service, namely, Justices Ngwuta, Okoro, Ademola, Pindiga and Dimgba.
The plaintiff contended in his suit that the raid on the residences of the judges and their arrest was unconstitutional.He maintained that the arrest of the judges did not follow the law.