The State Commissioner of Police, Andrew Amiengheme, has been ordered by the Akwa Ibom State High Court in Uyo, the state capital, to pay a barber, Haggai Oscar Oku, a resident of Itam, Itu Local Government Area of the State, the amount of N2 million for wrongful arrest and detention.
On December 18, 2020, the command’s officers and men apprehended and imprisoned the barber due to a mistaken identity.
In the case between Oku and the Commissioner of Police, the presiding court, Justice Ntong, concluded that the Commissioner, via his officers and men, infringed the applicants’ personal liberty by arresting and holding him in lieu of another person known as Soft Touch.
He said following the decline of purchasing power of Naira in Nigeria, the applicant should be compensated in monetary term.
Justice Ntong further said that it’s high time Nigeria police began to respect the constitution and rights of the citizens as enshrined in Chapter 4 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He said ” I hold that the unlawful arrest and the continuous detention of the applicant without trial till the day this Honourable Court granted him bail, amount to torture as the applicant suffered aggravated psychological harassment. Though there is no direct evidence of torture of the applicant by the respondent. The only situation that can assuage and ameliorate the suffering of the applicant is payment of damages in monetary term.”
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