Thursday, 25 May 2017

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Release Ifeanyi Ubah with 48 hours, Court orders DSS

Release Ifeanyi Ubah with 48 hours, Court orders DSS
Justice Mohammed Idris of a Federal High Court in Lagos on Thursday ordered the immediate release of the Managing Director of Capital Oil a and Gas, Ifeanyi Ubah who is currently being
detained by the Department of States Services.
Ubah, it would be recalled has been in custody since May 6.
The DSS had detained Ubah on the complaint by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation that Ubah and his company allegedly diverted 84,891,730 litres of Premium Motor Spirit valued at N11,144,586,314.40.
Ubah had however sought the intervention of the court, filing an application seeking his release from custody.
Justice Idris in a ruling on Thursday dismissed the objection by the DSS and the NNPC and ordered that Ubah should be released within 48 hours.
Justice Idris held that Ubah’s detention without charge violated his rights. He also said the DSS lied on oath in a bid to justify Ubah’s illegal detention.

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Justice Idris held that Section 41 of the Constitution and Article 12 of the African Charter guarantees to every Nigerian the right to move freely.
He warned that there would be dire consequences if the government continues to violate human rights.
“In place of widespread culture of impunity, there is need to build a culture of accountability and respect for the rule of law and the Constitution.
“Such culture must be built on the conviction on the part of the leadership of this country, including the judiciary, that democracy cannot be successful if respect for the constitution and human rights is shaky.
“Democracy cannot be successful if the government remains ambivalent about the rule of law and if governmental authorities and powerful individuals are perceived to be above the law.
“In a constitutional democracy as ours, no one, no institution, no agent or agency of government shall be above the law.
“The institutional and procedural bottlenecks to legal enforcement of human rights can create despair in large segments of the population about realising their rights.

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“Individuals or groups may then seek alternative means of actualising their rights. Arms struggles and other extra-legal means of resistance often result from the absence of effective legal remedies.
“A democracy must have practical means of securing accountability for human rights violations. We must as a nation ensure that human rights are protected and enforced in real time.
“In the entire circumstances of this case, I hold that the applicants have established the case against the fourth and fifth being the DG of SSS and DSS for the violation of their rights as guaranteed under the constitution.
“An order is hereby made directing the DG of SSS and the DSS to, within 48 hours of the judgement of the court in this action, initiate or institute a criminal action against the applicants herein before any court of competent jurisdiction if they have committed any crime against the state.
“An order is hereby made directing the DG of SSS and the DSS to release the first applicant from detention unconditionally if no criminal action is instituted against him within 48 hours of this judgment.

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“The first respondent, being the Attorney-General of the Federation, shall ensure strict and due compliance with the judgment of this court. That is the judgment of the court,” the Judge held.
The judge had earlier dismissed DSS’ and NNPC’s preliminary objections.


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