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Federal High Court Judgment Confirms El-Rufai’s Lied In The Detention Allegation Against Peter Obi – PRNigeria Fact-check

A judgment of the Federal High Court, Awka Division in Anambra State delivered on September 29, 2014 has revealed that former Anambra State Governor and currently Presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr Peter Obi has no hand in the detention of Kaduna State Governor, Nasir El-Rufai in 2013.

PRNigeria, in its traditional fact-check on trending issues, recently proved that the claim by Elrufai that Peter Obi as the Governor of Anambra State in 2013 ordered his detention is MISLEADING

Contrary to the claim of the Kaduna State Governor, the Court’s judgment exclusively obtained by PRNigeria in a suit filed by El-Rufai on December 19, 2013, to challenge the breach of his fundamental rights as occasioned by his restriction to hotel premises, made no reference either directly or indirectly to Peter Obi in the 48 hours detention at Finotel hotel premises.

In fact, El-Rufai, throughout his claims in the court papers, was that operatives of the State Security Service (SSS) were solely responsible for the unlawful restrictions he suffered from November 15 to 16 while in Awka to observe a Gubernatorial election of 2013 on behalf of his party, the All Progressives Congress, (APC).

The judgment delivered by Hon Justice Bature Isah Gafai, showed clearly that El-Rufai directed his allegations against the SSS alone, hence, he did not join either Peter Obi or Anambra State Government as defendants in the suit marked FHC/AWK/CS/310/13.

In clear terms, the only two defendants in the suit are the SSS and the Attorney General of the Federation AGF as 1st and 2nd defendants respectfully, while AGF was made a defendant on account of being the Chief Law Officer of the Federation as well as for vicarious liabilities reasons.

PRNigeria noted clearly that Justice Bature Isah Gafai, in the 29-page judgment, never made even a veil reference or issued an order whatsoever, against Peter Obi and Anambra State since El-Rufai in all his depositions in the suit pointed no wrongdoings against Peter Obi in the detention saga.

Rather, Justice Gafai, now in the Court of Appeal, found SSS liable for the unlawful detention of the Kaduna State Governor and accordingly, imposed a fine of N2M on the security agency to be paid as damages to El-Rufai for the breach of his fundamental rights to personal liberty, freedom of movement, speech, and association.

The Judge also ordered the SSS only to tender an apology to El-Rufai in two national dailies, to wit; the Sun and Daily Trust newspapers, having been found liable for the act complained of by El-Rufai.

It is instructive that for the period of almost one year hearing in the case lasted and throughout the depositions of El-Rufai on oath, no mention or reference was made to Peter Obi or Anambra State Government as culprits in the unlawful restrictions at the Finotel hotel premises.

The SSS and AGF in their joint counter affidavit to El-Rufai’s claims of unlawful arrest and detention had asserted in defense, that the Kaduna State Governor who was classified as a “VIP” was accorded protective restrictions when he refused the request of its operatives to give him protective company.

Though Justice Gafai rejected the SSS assertions, the security agency had claimed to have an “intelligence report” that El-Rufai would be harmed and that it would be blamed for the failure to act to give him protection, hence, the deployment of its operatives to the hotel.

The security agency, specifically, claimed that it had no choice but to confine El-Rufai to the hotel premises because of his blunt refusal to allow its operatives to accompany him during the election monitoring.

PRNigeria’s fact findings, as corroborated by the Federal High Court judgment further prove that El-Rufai’s allegations of unlawful detention against Mr Peter Obi, coming almost nine years a court held that the detention was done by SSS based on El-Rufai’s own evidence, is misleading.

By PRNigeria

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