From Ron Jacob, Jos
The Imo State Governor, Mr Rochas Okorocha, has sued the Inspector General of Police (IGP), over what he described a “breach of his fundamental human rights’’ following an invasion and ransacking of his house in Jos.
The Governor, who filed his case before Justice Musa Kurya of the Jos Federal High Court, is demanding for N1.25 billion being general damages for the breach of his fundamental human rights.
Joined in the suit are Commissioner of Police Plateau State, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Attorney General of the federation and Minister of Justice as 2nd, 3rd and 4th respondents.
The Owelle, through his counsel, Mr Markus Saleh (SAN), had told the court that on May 3, 2018, the respondents had invaded his home in Jos and held his family members and staff hostage in a search conducted without any court warrant.
He prayed the court to declare the invasion of his home as “illegal, null and void’’ as there was no valid court warrant for such an action.
Okorocha also prayed the court for a perpetual injunction restraining the respondents from further doing anything as such in his homes across the country.
He further sought for an order declaring that only the Imo State House of Assembly has the constitutional rights and power to supervise, monitor, legislate, appropriate and demand accounting of public funds of Imo state from him.
Consequently, he asked the court to order the respondents to pay him the sum of one billion Naira as general damages and N25 million being cost of instituting the case.
When the case came up for hearing on Tuesday, Saleh told the court that he had an amended statement of claim and further affidavit, which he intended to move as deemed duly filed and served on all the respondents.
However, the respondents counsel was not in court and no reason was given for absence.
“My Lord, I am surprised that the respondents are not in court today even though they have been duly served with the notices and amended statement of claim and further affidavit.
“I wish to move it since they are all aware of it in accordance with the rule of this court, ’’ he prayed the court.
The Judge, Justice Kurya, however, allowed him to move the motion after ruling on the application.
Nonetheless, after moving the motion, Saleh asked for a date to enable the respondents to respond to his amended statement and for him to also reply after their responses.
I also wish to apply that we should be allowed, on the next resumption, file our final adoption of our written addresses, ’’ he solicited.
Kurya, who granted the prayers, then adjourned the case to January 24, 2019 for adoption of final written addresses by all parties in the case.