A Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has ordered the Attorney-General of the Federation (AGF) and the Nigerian Army to produce in court, a medical doctor, Mohammed Mari Abba, who was accused of link with Boko Haram.
Justice Binta Murtala-Nyako, in her ruling on a suit filed by Abba, through his counsel, Ocholi Okutepa, to challenge his continuous detention ordered the Army to in the alternative charge him to court.
Abba, a consultant with World Health Organization (WHO), was arrested in Yobe State in 2012 and has remained in detention, according to Okutepa.
He asked the court to declare his arrest and detention since 2012 without a valid court order, as not only illegal and unlawful, but grossly unconstitutional and a grave infringement on his fundamental rights to personal liberty.
He also asked the court to award N500 million as damages for his illegal detention.
Joined in the enforcement of fundamental rights’ suit were the AGF, the Federal Government of Nigeria, the Inspector-General of Police, the Chief of Army Staff, the Chief of Defence Staff, the Nigerian Army and the Director-General, State Security Service.
In the ruling release by the court at the weekend, Justice Nyako held, “The first thing I wish to raise in this case is on the case of the applicant (Abba). This applicant who is suing in person is “missing”.
“The applicant, according to his wife, who deposed to the affidavit in support of the application, is being kept by the respondents in an undisclosed place.
“However curiously, I have come across a process in the file dated 10/06/16 on behalf of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th respondents, which claimed that the applicant has been charged in suit number FHC/ABJ/CR/138/2015.
“If this is correct, then it will be safe to assume the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th respondents have an idea where the applicant may be. So as not to embark on exercise in futility, I hereby order the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 5th respondents to produce the applicant before the court within 60 days or charge him to court.
“On the alternative, they should show cause, why I should not order them to release the applicant unconditionally.”