Obanikoro slams N100m suit on EFCC over rights violations, seizure of properties

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Read the statement below…
Former Minister of State for Defence,
Musiliu Obanikoro yesterday slammed a
N100 million suit on the Economic and
Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC)
before the Federal High Court in Lagos
over an alleged breached of his
fundamental human rights.
The former Minister is demanding the
sum as general damages for the alleged
unlawful and unconstitutional seizure and
detention of several items, properties and
personal effects belonging to him and
family by the EFCC on June 24, 2016.
Other applicants in the suit are: Mrs. Fati
Obanikoro, Alhaja Moroophat Obanikoro,
Gbolahon Obanikoro, Babajide Obanikoro.
Obanikoro in the fundamental rights enforcement
suit, filed on his behalf by his lawyer, Chief
Ogwu Onoja (SAN), is also praying the court to
restrain the EFCC whether by its officers,
Servants, privies, assigns or agents from
arresting, detaining, harassing any of the
applicants or any of their relatives pending the
hearing and determination of the suit.
The applicants also want the court to restrain
the commission from further entering their
premises and an order Directing it to tender an
unreserved public apology to them for the
unlawful action.
They are also asking the court to direct the
respondent to release all the items, properties
and personal effects seized from their premises.
The applicants further want the court to hold
that the action of the EFCC constitute a gross
violation of their fundamental rights as
guarantee under section 43 of the 1999
Constitution and Article 14 of the African Charter
on Human and Peoples’ Rights.
In a 15 paragraphs affidavit attached to the suit
and sworn to by Mrs. Fati Obanikoro, states
that on June 14 some officials of the EFCC
numbering about 20 stormed their premises
situated at 10 Mojisola Onikoyi Street, by
Banana Island, Ikoyi, Lagos and took away
several items.
She also alleged that the respondent thereafter
proceeded to also search the personal house of
the former Minister at 4 Layi Ajayi-Bembe road,
Parkview, Ikoyi, Lagos
She also claimed that before the alleged
invasion of the premises there was no prior
notice by way of letter or invitation served on
any of the applicants and there was also no
order of court mandating them to carry out the
action.
She list some of the items seized by the
Commission to include: building plans, cheque
leaflets, company documents, car keys, phones,
two company seals and six company stam
The applicant further averred that the EFCC
officials claimed that they are investigating the
former Minister and two of his children but some
of the properties taken away do not belong to
them.
She also insisted that unless the court issued an
order compelling the commission, it will not
return the seized properties.
No date has been set for the hearing of the suit.

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