The Abuja Division of the Federal High Court has banned the parading of suspects by Nigerian police officers, if it must be done, then a court order must be obtained. This ruling was passed by Justice Zainab Abubakar in a suit marked FCH/ABJ/SC/01/2022 and filed by Victor Ojionu against the Inspector-General of Police and Attorney-General of the Federation over the unlawful arrest, handcuffing detention, and pre-trial media parade by a team of IRT police officers on 17th September 2019.
Represented by Marshall Abubakar of Femi Falana Chamber, the plaintiff succeeded in arguing his pre-trial parade as unlawful and stating it was a violation of his fundamental human right, hence he was yet to be confirmed guilty by a competent court.
Upon hearing from both parties, Ms. Abubakar declared the arrest of Mr. Ojionu as illegal, null, and void and in violation of Sections 34 and 36 of the 1999 Constitution as amended, and Articles 6,4,5 and 7 of the African Charter on Human and People's Right. A million naira was given to the plaintiff as compensation and order of retraction of the defamatory publication on all social media blogs and websites was issued as well.
More so, it is said that the ruling has set a precedent for similar offenses, as citizens suspected of criminal activities now have legal backing to sue the police if paraded without an order from the court.