Court Restrains Police From Trespassing, Arresting Businessman Over Property - Mc Ebisco
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Court restrains police from trespassing, arresting businessman over property

An Abuja High Court has restrained the Inspector General of Police (IGP), his agents, or anyone acting under his authority from arresting or inviting a businessman, Mr. Ugochukwu Elobi over a property located on Plot 162 Gudu District, Abuja.

The trial judge, Justice M.A. Madugu, sitting in Bwari Division of the court, also restrained the Police boss from collecting the original land title documents or entry or/and interfering with the proprietary right of the applicant’s company, Aknaton Holdings Ltd over the said plot of land, pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice marked, FCT/HC/BW/CV/254/2022.

In his ruling on an exparte motion filed and argued by Barrister Kingsley Muoemeka on behalf of the applicant on November 2, the judge directed all the parties in the matter to maintain status-quo ante-bellum pending the hearing of the motion on notice and adjourned the matter till November 15, 2022.

The businessman, in a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed on 27th October, wants the court to declare that the actions of Police officers from the IGP monitoring unit, Force Headquarters, Abuja in demanding that he surrenders and delivers the original land title documents belonging to his company, Aknaton Holdings Ltd over plot 262 Gudu District in Abuja to the Police or get arrested and detained constitute a gross violation of his rights to personal liberty.

That the continued threats and insistence of Police officers under the IGP that he should submit or deposit the original documents of the land to the Police or get arrested and detained amounts to a flagrant violation of his rights to personal liberty and right to acquire and own immovable property anywhere in the country as guaranteed under Section 35 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended).

He also wants the court to declare that the action of Police under the control of the IGP, invading the said plot on September 27th and 30th and arresting the guards and workers he engaged in the site and the threat and warning by the Police that, he should not step into the land again without valid court order constitute an infraction of his right to dignity of human person.

“A declaration that civil transactions, ownership of land and declaration of title to land is outside the statutory mandate of the Nigeria Police and the respondent, whether acting by himself or through Police officers under his control neither has statutory rights nor powers to determine ownership of Plot 162 Gudu District, Abuja nor to determine who stays in exclusive possession of the said plot.