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N11m compensation: Army to challenge court verdict at Appeal Court

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Chief of Army Staff Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai

By Joseph Erunke

ABUJA-THE Nigerian Army has begun moves aimed at challenging last Friday’s verdict of the Federal High Court Abuja,which ordered it to pay the sum of N11 million to some persons it reportedly detained illegally in Gombe State.

The Army, Vanguard gathered, has directed its legal unit to study the judgment of the trial judge, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu, which had ordered the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, to pay N11 million to the 11 Gombe State indigenes.

Our source, who refused to be mentioned because he was not authorized to speak to the media, said:”We have not been served with the court judgement but we’re already aware of the development. When we receive the court order, I hope it will be treated expeditiously. I can tell you that the Nigerian Army Legal Unit is studying the development. We shall respond when we are formally served a court order.”

“We are going to study the grounds upon which the court based its judgement and respond appropriately. Certainly, the judgement cannot stand, we are going to appeal it at the Court of Appeal, “he added.

The Director of Army Public Relations, Brigadier General Texas Chukwu, refused to speak on the issue when contacted. He did not pick his calls or respond to a text message sent to his known mobile telephone numbers.

Recall that Justice Ojukwu, had last Friday, ordered the Nigerian Army chief to doll out N11 million as damages to the 11 Gombe indigenes, citing gross violation their Fundamental human rights.

“The long detention and torture, without detention order, of the Applicants since July 6, 2018, by servants and agents of the 1st defendant, COAS, is illegal and unconstitutional citing grossy violation of the applicants’ fundamental rights as enshrined.

Mrs Ojukwu, in her judgment, said the detention of the applicants since July 6 was illegal and unconstitutional.

The detainees are James Yusuf, Ishaya Ali Poshiya, Nehemiah Yohanna Poshiya, Husseini Poshiya, Hamma Poshiya, Yusuf Mafindi, Yila Boyi, James Bare, Ezekiel Dandaudu, Ali Ishaku and Ilya Bala.

She added that the detention of the 11 people was a breach of their fundamental rights and ordered their immediate release.

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