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Court Discharges Three EndSARS Detainees

Justice Modupe Nicole-Clay discharged the three -- Sunday Okoro, Olumide Fatai and Oluwole Yisa -- following an oral application by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation which moved to withdraw the proceedings against them.


FILE: #EndSARS protesters in October 2020 calling on the Nigerian govt to be accountable while holding placards and the Nigerian flag and protesting police brutality (Photos: Tiem Okori)

 

The Lagos High Court sitting in Ikeja has discharged and acquitted three persons detained for their alleged involvement in the #EndSARS protest.

Justice Modupe Nicole-Clay discharged the three — Sunday Okoro, Olumide Fatai and Oluwole Yisa — following an oral application by the office of the Attorney General of the Federation which moved to withdraw the proceedings against them.

There was no objection from the counsel for the #EndSars protesters, Adeshina Ogunlana.

Ogunlana told our judiciary correspondent, Shola Soyele that in the 3 years his clients were detained, there was no evidence or witnesses brought against them and there was clearly a lack of diligent prosecution.

Amnesty International in its response to their release welcomed the discharge and acquittal of the trio who had been detained at the Kirikiri Medium Correctional Centre, Lagos State for participating in #EndSARS protests in October 2020.

In a release dated March 25th, AI says the trio should never have been charged in the first place.

“They were detained under trumped-up charges ranging from theft, arson, possession of unlawful firearms, and murder for well over three years and five months at Kirikiri Medium Correctional Centre, having previously been detained at the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad Unit of the Nigeria Force facility in Lagos State”.

Amnesty International also called on the Nigerian authorities to release Daniel Joy-Igbo, Sodiq Adigun, Shehu Anas, and Akiniran Oyetakin who were also arrested in Lagos in 2020, and are still being arbitrarily held in Kirikiri Medium Correctional Centre for over three years.

“Peaceful #EndSARS protesters Segun Adeniyi, Onuorah Odih, Jeremiah Lucky, Gideon Ikwujomah, Irinyemi Olorunwanbe, Quadri Azeez, Olamide Lekan and Sadiq Riliwan – are still also detained without trial in Ikoyi Medium Security Correctional Centre in Lagos since 2020”.

“Our investigations show that as of October last year 15 #EndSARS protesters were in detention since October 2020. The Nigerian authorities must provide information about the status of other #EndSARS protesters being held in various prisons across the country, grant their families and lawyers access to them, charge them to court, or release them from detention immediately,” Isa Sanusi, Director Amnesty International Nigeria.

“Violation of human rights during #EndSARS shows complete disregard for the right to peaceful assembly. All those detained solely for taking part in peaceful #EndSARS protests must be released immediately and unconditionally.”

“The Nigerian authorities have an obligation to respect, protect, promote, and fulfil the right to peaceful protest, including by publicly directing security and law enforcement agencies to stop infringing on the right to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly”.