Tuesday, 30 June 2020 05:10

Court orders police to pay N15m to families of three slain IMN members

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A Federal High Court in Abuja has ordered the police to pay N15 million to relatives of three members of proscribed Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) killed during protest in Abuja.

The names of the deceased were given as Suleiman Shehu, Mahdi Musa and Bilyaminu Faska.

Mr Taiwo Taiwo gave the order on Monday in three separate judgments in three fundamental rights enforcement suits filed by relatives of the deceased IMN members.

The judge ordered the National Hospital in Abuja to immediately release bodies of the deceased in its morgue to their families.

He said each of the three applicants must be paid N5 million as compensation for the unlawful killings.

Taiwo rejected the applicants’ prayer that the police tender an apology to them in two national newspapers.

Respondents in the three suits are: Inspector General of Police (IGP) and Medical Director of National Hospital in Abuja.

Shehu, Musa and Faska were allegedly killed by agents of the first respondent on July 22, 2019, during a peaceful at Federal Secretariat in Abuja to demand the release of their leader, Mr Ibrahim El-Zakzaky and his wife, Zeenah.

Bodies of the deceased were deposited at the National Hospital in Abuja.

The applicants, who are said to be brothers of the deceased, are: Ibrahim Abdullahi, Ahmad Musa and Yusuf Faska.

Before reading the judgments on Monday, the judge rejected attempt by lawyer to the police, Mr Simon Lough, to arrest the judgments.

Mr Taiwo noted that despite the service of court processes and hearing notices on the IGP, the police failed to file any counter-application.

The judge said issues of fundamental rights enforcement should be given priority over any other cases, citing previous Supreme Court cases.

He held that the first defendant had been given adequate notice to make its submission and the principle of fair hearing had been adhered to by the court.

Referring to the Holy Qur’an, Taiwo stated that in Islam, human life is sacred, adding that the sacred book frowns at extra-judicial killings.

The judge said despite efforts of the families, it was painful that the bodies of the deceased were still in the morgue.

 

The Nation