30th October, 2023
By Akin Kuponiyi
Nigerian musician, Abdulazeez Adeshina Fashola a. k.a. Naira Marley and Samson Balogun Eletu a.k.a Sam Larry have filed fundamental rights enforcement suit against Lagos Commissioner of Police to demand their release from detention and N20 million each as damages.
Joined as co-respondents in the suits are Waheed Ayilara, Deputy Commissioner of Police Homicide section Panti Yaba Lagos and Adeola Olatunbosun, the Chief Magistrate court 1 Yaba,Lagos.
Aside from appealing to the court to order their immediate release from detention, the two applicants release are also demanding N20 million each as damages.
Marley and Larry were arrested by the police on the 3rd and 4th October, 2023 respectively over alleged connection of their to the death of singer Ilerioluwa Aloba aka Mohbad.
However, the police had on 4th of October obtained an order from Yaba Magistrate Court to remand them for 30 days pending its investigation into the death of Mohbad.
However, the Chief Magistrate Adeola Olatunbosun granted Police permission to detain remand them for only 21 days in the custody of the Police which lapsed on the 26th day of October.
However, Marley and Larry said despite the lapse of the detention period, the police have continued arrest, detain and restrict their right to liberty and freedom of movement, thus infringing on their fundamental rights as citizens of Nigeria.
They noted that they not been indicted in anyway whatsoever in the death of Mohbad and had cooperated with the police so far in the investigation.
“They pledged not to interfere with the ongoing investigation, if any, till conclusion of same.
“The Applicant undertake not to attempt to influence, interfere with and or intimidate any witness(es), and/or interfere with investigation of the case, if same has not been concluded.
“The Applicants further undertake not to undermine or jeopardize the objectives or purpose or the functioning of the criminal justice administration including the bail system.
“Consequently It is in the interest of justice to grant the Applicants reliefs as prayed.
“That the refusal by the Honourable Court to grant the Applicants reliefs as prayed will cause exceptional hardship to the Applicants.
“Consequently, they are seeking the following orders from the court:
“A declaration that the continued detention of the Applicants by the Police at the Homicide Section of the Lagos State Police Command, Panti, Yaba, Lagos State from the 26th day of October, 2023 when the order for the remand was granted by the Chief Magistrate Adeola Olatunbosun at the Magistrate Court, holden at Yaba on the 4th day of October, 2023 had since lapsed and or expired thereby constituting a violation of the Applicants constitutional right to personal liberty and human dignity as guaranteed by Section 34 (1)(a)(b), 35, 41 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 4, 5 and 6 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, (CAP A9) LFN 2004.
“An order of the Honourable Court releasing the Applicants forthwith.
“The sum of N20,000,000 (Twenty Million naira) each as damages for the breach of the Applicants fundamental rights to personal liberty and dignity of human person, as contained in Section 34 (1)(a)(b), 35, 41 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and Article 4, 5 and 6 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights (Ratification and Enforcement) Act, (CAP A9) LFN 2004,” Larry and Marley said in the affidavit filed with the suit.
No date has been fixed for the hearing of the suit.