ECOWAS Court Orders Benin Republic to Pay Igboho CFA N20m for Unlawful Detention


The Community Court of Justice of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), sitting in Abuja, has ordered the government of the Republic of Benin to pay Yoruba Nation Agitator, Chief Sunday Adeyemo (aka Sunday Igboho), the sum of 20 million CFA for unlawful detention and violation of his fundamental human rights.

While giving judgment in a suit filed by Igboho in Abuja yesterday, the court directed the country to make the payment within three months from the day of judgment.

Justices Gberi-Bé Ouattara, Sengu M. Koroma, and Ricardo Claúdio Monteiro GONÇALVES, in a unanimous judgment also ordered the Benin Republic government to present evidence of the payment to the court within the stipulated time.

The suit was marked ‘ECW/CCJ/APP/15/22 Chief Sunday Adeyemo (aka Sunday Igboho) Vs Republic of Benin.’

Adeyemo sought enforcement of his fundamental human rights after he was arrested and detained on July 21, 2021 while travelling to Germany en route to the neighbouring country. He was detained for more than one year.

He dragged Benin Republic before the ECOWAS Court, Abuja on February 10, 2022.

The Department of State Security (DSS) personnel had stormed Igboho’s Soka, Ibadan home in the wee hours of July 1, 2021, shooting their way into the house. Two persons were killed in the operation, while 12 of his aides and supporters were arrested and taken to the headquarters of the security agency in Abuja for trial.

The DSS accused Igboho of stockpiling arms with the aim of forcefully ejecting killer-herders from Southwest Nigeria.

Counsel for the embattled agitator include Tosin Ojaomo, Aderemilekun Omojola, Dr Janet Fashakin, while Irene Aclombessi, represented the Republic of Benin.

In the suit, Igboho prayed the court for an expedited hearing regarding his detention pursuant to Article 59 of Rules of Procedure.

He also prayed for an order for his immediate and unconditional release along with his Nigerian passport, pending litigation and determination of damages, and any order as the court may deem fit.”

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