Arrested victim sues Rivers Government, Police, demands N1bn damages

By Paul Obiajunwo, Port Harcourt

A middle –aged man, Mr. Igoniwari Rowland Malafakumo, has dragged the Rivers State Ministry of Environment, the State Police Command and others to court for alleged unlawful arrest after he was paraded naked on the street, three years ago.

Malafakumo, among other reliefs, is seeking damages totaling N1billion from the Ministry of Environment, Rivers State Government, Commissioner of Police, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice among others.

The sum, according to his lawyer, is for degrading and inhuman treatment meted out to him, mental torture, illegal detention and humiliation inflicted on him by the defendants.

The victim is praying the court, through his counsel F.U. OKORO ESQ, to declare that his arbitrary arrest, beating, stripping naked, being paraded without clothes before members of the public without any known offence is illegal and unconstitutional.

Okoro argued that the respondent’s brutal attack on the victim violates his fundamental rights to liberty and dignity. “Compensation would also serve as deterrent to other law enforcement agents and government officials that they cannot take law into their hands,” Okoro said.

Speaking with our reporter after court proceedings yesterday, the victim, Malafakumo, said he expressed confidence that justice would be done eventually on the matter.