A retired major from the Nigerian Army, Ali Abdullahi and Sergeant Abdul Wahab Yunusa, have initiated proceedings before an Abuja High Court to commit the Chief of Army Staff and Lt.-Col. Femi Olorunyomi to prison for disobeying a valid court order.
The plaintiffs filed Form 48, which is the first in the process of asking the court to commit the defendants to prison, if they delay any further in obeying a court order.
The plaintiffs are the Nigerian Army, chief of army staff, Lt Col Femi Olorunyomi, minister of defence and the attorney-general of federation and the minister of justice as co-defendants.
Justice U.A. Inyang had on October 8, 2012 ordered the defendants to release the plaintiffs unconditionally on bail, which the defendants have not obeyed.
The plaintiffs were arrested on August 14, 2012 by Olorunyomi, a member of Military Task Force in Lokoja in connection with the two soldiers killed in Okene on August 12.
They contended that although the defendants were yet to disclose the reasons for their arrest and incarceration at Mogadishu Barracks in Abuja till date, the security operatives have since arrested the hoodlums, who killed the two soldiers.
Besides, the slain soldiers’ rifles, which were carted away, have been recovered without a trace of their involvement. The 1st applicant averred that he had been a vigilante group member set up at the instance of the police command in Lokoja, which was meant to help combat the armed robbery in Ebira land.
In the motion on notice earlier filed by plaintiffs’ lawyer, Christopher Eichie to regain their freedom, they asked the court to declare their arrest and detention in Mogadishu Barracks guardroom illegal.
Consequently, they asked the court to make an order compelling respondents to release them unconditionally or arraign them before a competent court of jurisdiction.
They asked the court also to make an order compelling respondents to pay the sum of N100 million as compensation for their illegal detention, inhuman and debasing treatment Justice Inyang granted their prayer for unconditional release on the ground that they have not been indicted in any way.