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Rivers CP to pay orphanage owner N20m for illegal detention

By Adje Ramadan, Port Harcourt

The Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has ordered the Rivers State Commissioner of Police and the disbanded Eagle Crack Unit of the state command to pay the sum of N20m as damages for parading the owner of an orphanage after accusing her of running a baby factory.

In February 2020, the police paraded the owner of Tender Life Initiative Foundation, Chinelo Odiakosa-Mmakwe, and her workers for allegedly running an orphanage home.

But after Miss Odiakosa-Mmakwe was released from police custody, she took the police authorities to court for alleged violation of her fundamental rights.

Justice Mohammed Abubakar, in his judgement, granted the seven reliefs sought by the claimant and also condemned the practice of parading suspects.

Shortly after the court proceedings, lawyer to the complainant, Henry Ekine, who spoke to journalists, said the court had risen to protect the rights of citizens.

Ekine stated, “All seven prayers were granted to the effect that the court declared the arrest and detention as illegal and a violation of her fundamental rights. The court declared the public parading of the arrestees as also a violation of the fundamental rights of those citizens. Again, a declaration was made to the effect that their dignity was actually violated.”

Odiakosa-Mmakwe said the ruling had vindicated her, adding that she would continue to pursue her dream of assisting young women to get help.

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