By; BAYO AKAMO, Ibadan
It was jubilation galore for supporters of Yoruba rights activist, Sunday Adeyemo Igboho as an Oyo State High Court sitting in Ibadan on Friday, ordered the Federal Government, the Director General, Department of State Security (DSS), DSS Director in Oyo state to pay N20 billion exceptional and aggravated damage for the unlawful invasion of his Ibadan residence.
The Court also granted all the relief prayed for by the Yoruba nation agitator activist.
Justice Ladiran Akintola in his 90 minutes judgement, equally restrained the Federal Government, the DSS, their agents, privies or otherwise from further harassing, molesting or arresting him. The judge also awarded N2 million cost against the Federal Government, DG DSS and the DSS Director in Oyo State.
Justice Akintola said the court is unable to rule that the second and third respondents have a competent notice of preliminary objection before this court in this suit., saying, same is invalid and incompetent, not having been signed neither by the parties, nor by their counsel in this suit thereby rendering it incurably defective and incompetent in law.
Concerning the July 1st invasion the court held that the reckless and indiscriminate shooting undertaken by the second and third respondents and their agents, which resulted in the death of two persons at the place was “a threat to the life of Sunday Igboho as it was glaring that” nobody shoots guns in the entertainment of people”
He maintained that such a conduct has a serious potential of killing the victim, and at best constitutes a serious threat to the life of the people, and that it is difficult to believe that the cache of arms and ammunition allegedly recovered from the residence of the applicant really came to bear.
Justice Akintola stressed further that even with the argument, the defence of the second and third respondents, (DSS) into the relief, that they gathered intelligence, that the applicant was in possession of arms and ammunition at his residence, with which to cede the control of the South West to Lagos, it is clear enough Nigeria is in a state of war that would warrant the style and procedure adopted by the DSS and their agents.
Describing the DSS operatives invasion of Sunday Adeyemo Igboho residence as “highly condemnable, repressible, crude and most unprofessional, JusticeAkintola said the style adopted by the DSS should be condemned in strongest possible terms, especially with the fact that they are maintained by the Nigerian taxpayers, and yet they did not hesitate to unleash such mayhem on a Nigerian citizen, who has not been pronounced guilty of any crime by any court of the land
The judge noted that with the benefit of the hindsight, given the number of guns, arms allegedly recovered from the premises of the applicant on the fateful night, relative to the harms, damage and deaths, plus trauma inflicted on, not only the applicant, his households, guests, and neighbourhood, it is very doubtful if it worth the exercise at all.
Justice Akintola said this is one case that one would have wished that individual identities of the agents of the DSS who undertook the most bizzare, horrendous operation were known, they should have been made to pay for damages
Awarding the N20 billion exceptional and aggravated damages against the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, the DG DSS and the DSS Director in Oyo state, Justice Akintola restrained the Federal Government, the DSS, their agents, privies or otherwise from further harassing, molesting or arresting him, Justice Akintola also awarded N2 million cost against them.