A Federal High Court that sat in Asaba, Delta State, has awarded the sum of N10m to a businessman, Anthony Okolie who was detained by the Department of State Services (DSS) for using a sim card previously used by Hanan Buhari, President Buhari’s daughter.
On July 19, 2019, Mr. Okolie, an Asaba-based businessman was arrested by the DSS and detained for using a telephone line that was previously owned by Hanan.
Going by Okolie, he remained in custody, bound by handcuffs till September 22, 2019- a period of 10 weeks, without any charge as the DSS waited for Hanan who was schooling in the UK as at the time.
After his release, Okolie sued the DSS, President Buhari’s daughter and MTN for N500m in damages “as general and aggravated damages for the gross and unlawful violation of the applicant’s right to acquire moveable properties, freedom of movement and self-dignity.”
On Thursday the court presided by Justice Nnamdi Dimgba, awarded him N10m in damages to be paid by the DSS for the abuse of Mr Okolie’s fundamental human rights, but struck out the charges against Hanan Buhari, and telecoms company, MTN saying that there is no substantial evidence against Hanan and MTN.
The DSS had in court papers claimed they got a directive from the presidency to arrest Okolie as he was using the phone number to solicit for funds from the public, an allegation Okolie’s legal team flatly denied.
Tope Akinyode, lawyer to Okolie in a Twitter post on Thursday confirmed the news of the court ruling. “I’ve been able to persuade the Federal High Court to award N10m against SSS for the 10 weeks detention of Anthony Okolie over an MTN SIM card once used by the daughter of President Buhari, Hanan.” he said