A Federal High court sitting in Awka, the Anambra State capital, has ordered the Police and Isuofia Microfinance Bank Limited to pay the sum of N2.2 million to a nursing mother, Ohadugha Chizara, as damages, for her unlawful arrest and detention, together with her six-month-old baby at the Okpoko police cell.
The case with suit No: FHC/Awka/ CS/121/2022 was between Ohadugha Chizara, the applicant, and Isuofia Microfinance Bank Ltd, Nwafor Okechukwu, Nwoke Ifeoma, Commissioner of Police Anambra State, Ugochukwu Ugbo, the Divisional Police Officer Okpoko and Inspector Chinelo Okechi (I.P.O) as respondents.
The Counsel for the applicant, F.N Asogwa Esq of His Grace Chambers in her application of fundamental rights, had prayed the court for an order for the respondents to pay her client the sum of (N100,000,000) One Hundred Million naira as compensation as well as general damages.
The damages also include violating her fundamental rights to life, dignity of human persons, right to personal liberty, and freedom of movement from June 22, 2022, till June 24, 2022, at Okpoko Police cell in Anambra State.
The applicant also prayed to the court that the respondents should pay N50 million to her client as exemplary damages for “violating, infringing and breaching her client’s fundamental rights to life”.
The counsel also asked that the respondents should be restrained with his privies agents or cohorts from “violating, infringing and breaching her client’s fundamental right to life, the dignity of the human persons, right to personal liberty and freedom of movement as enshrined in Nigeria constitution among other reliefs.”
Delivering judgment on Friday, the Presiding Judge, Justice F. I. Riman, directed the Police, the bank, Nwafor Okechukwu, and Nwoke Ifeoma to pay the nursing mother the sum of N2m.
The Judge also ordered the respondents to pay two hundred thousand naira (N200,000), as exemplary damages for violating, infringing, and breaching the applicant’s fundamental rights from June 22, 2022, to June 24, 2022, at Okpoko Police Station where he was detained.
The court equally granted an injunction restraining the respondents, his privies, agents, or cohorts from violating, infringing, and breaching Chizara’s fundamental rights to life, dignity of human persons, rights to personal liberty, and freedom of movement as enshrined in 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
The applicant, Chizara was detained over a loan transaction.