By Abdullahi Faruk Birnin Kebbi
Malam Muhammad Sani, a father to Abdulrahman Sani and the entire families who was killed by officer of Nigeria Customs Service(NCS) has lauded the Appeal Court unholding an earlier judgement delivered by Federal High Court sitting in Birnin Kebbi the state capital which ordered N 100 Million Naira Compensation to the deceased families.
Our correspondent, report that the families had gone to federal High Court after killing of Abdulrahman on November 10, 2020. Justice Baba-Gana Ashigar of federal High Court sitting in Birnin Kebbi on May 25, 2022, ordered the NCS to pay N 100 million Naira as compensation to the families of the deceased.
The NCS however went to the Appeal Court, Sokoto Division, on three grounds, as follows: The trial court in law when it held that the applicants deprivation of the respondant’s son life was arbitral and illegal notwithstanding the fact that the officers of appellant acted within the ambits of the law.
The trial court misdirected itself when it awarded the general and special damages to the tune of one Hundred Million Naira (N100,000,000) against the appellants notwithstanding the fact that the deceased first attacked the officers unprovoked thereby occasioning his untimely death.The judgement is against the weight of evidence.
Asking the court to set aside the judgement delivered on May 25, 2022 by Honourable Justice Baba-Gana Ashigar of the Federal High Court Birnin Kebbi. The panel of three justices of Appeal Court judges, led by Honourable Justice M. L. Shuaibu as presiding Judge and two others, while delivering judgement by Honourable Justice Muhammad Maidawa, upheld the earlier judgement of the federal High Court.
The Court Appeal in it judgement said that the killing of Abdulrahman was unlawful and a violation of the deceased fundamental right to life guaranteed under section 33 subsection 1 of the 1999 constitution of Nigeria.
It ordered the respondants to issue public apologies in a written form to the applicant and the community for the violation of the deceased fundamental right to life.
The appellate court also ordered the respondants to pay the sum of one Hundred Million Naira (N100,000,000) as damages for the violation of the deceased fundamental right to life. It however, declined to award cost of litigation against the respondants.
On behalf of the families, Muhammad Sani, father of the deceased told newsmen in Birnin Kebbi that he was happy with the judgement. ” Alhamdulillahi, Iam happy as the head of the families; and the two wives and five children and others of the deceased are also happy with the judgement of Appeal Court, Sokoto Division, for upholding the earlier judgement of the federal High Court today.
” We commend the Nigerian judicial system, the judges and lawyers who contributed immensely towards ensuring justice prevailed, and protect the vulnerable and poor people like us”. Head of the families recalled that the deceased was on his way to farm when the incident happened in 2020.
” My son was on his way to farm on November 10, 2020, along Bunza- Kamba Road in Fingilla Village of Dandi local government Area of the state when he was unlawfully killed by the personnel of the NCS who were on patrol,” he explained.
Aslo, Counsel to the families of the deceased, Barrister Umar Aminu Kalgo, Said justice has prevailed, calling for general public to have confidence on judiciary and justices of all level’s of court in the country.