In a judgement delivered today, April 3rd, 2014 by Justice Ibrahim Buba; a Federal High Court, Lagos has ordered the Federal Government, the State Security Service and the police to issue a public apology, release the seized passport and pay N50m exemplary damages to the suspended Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Sanusi Lamido. The allegation of terrorism financing levelled against him has also been dismissed.
You would recall that Sanusi was suspended as CBN governor on his way back from Niger Republic where he had attended a meeting of CBN Governors of ECOWAS states. On February 20, 2014, he was arrested and had his passport seized at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport.
The court held that the respondents, acting through the SSS do not have power to forcefully withdraw and seize the applicant’s passport for any reason and his detention without any allegation of commission of crime or charge amounted to restriction of his personal liberty and unlawful violation of his rights to personal liberty.
“The court observes that surely, there is no doubt that either there is no synergy between the respondents or the respondents are only singing discordant tunes as afterthought,” the judge added.