ABUJA — An FCT High Court, yesterday, ordered FirstBank Plc to pay N160,000 from the Nigeria Police account to a businessman, Tijani Olabode, as compensation for unlawful detention.
The amount include N100,000 as general damages against the police for breaching Olabode’s human rights, N10,000 as out-of-pocket expenses and N50,000 as additional cost of executing the garnishee order.
A garnishee order is a legal procedure by which a judgment creditor collects what a judgment debtor owes him by reaching the debtor’s property when it is in the hands of someone other than the debtor.
Delivering her ruling, Justice Angela Otaluka, made the ‘garnishee order absolute,‘ following the inability of the police to pay compensation to Olabode, based on an earlier order of the court.
“The court, hereby, makes the garnishee order absolute against the FirstBank Plc Account Number: 2015950936 belonging to the judgment debtors.
“By this, the bank is ordered to pay the judgment creditor the total sum of N160, 000 from the judgment debtor’s account with the bank,” Otaluka ordered.
The police had failed to comply with an earlier order of the court, dated January 31, 2012 to pay the plaintiff (applicant) the sum of N100,00 for unlawfully arresting him and, thereby, infringing on his fundamental rights.
Otaluka had in the judgment ordered that the plaintiff was entitled to N100,000 as general damages against the police for breach of his fundamental rights and N10,000 as out-of- pocket expenses.
It would be recalled that Olabode had sued the Inspector-General of Police for his arrest and detention at the Lugbe Divisional Police Station on May 12, 2011.
Joined in the suit were the FCT Commissioner of Police, Minister of Police Affairs, Divisional Police Officer, Lugbe and Investigating Police Officer.