Activist Sues Nigerian Government, Military for Conducting Operation Crocodile Smile

Tony Abu Momoh
4 Min Read
Activist Sues Nigerian Government, Military for Conducting Operation Crocodile Smile

A Nigerian human Rights Activist and Lawyer Chief Malcom Omirhobo has taken the Nigerian Federal and State Governments as well as the armed forces to court in a bid to stop the Nigerian Military from embarking on an exercise in the Niger Delta region of the country, Crocodile Smile 3.

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The lawyer dragged the institutions before the Federal High Court in Abuja in a suit which includes Malcom Omirhobo Foundation, as joint plaintiff while the attorney general of the federation, National Assembly, Nigerian Police Service Commission, Nigerian Police Council, Nigerian Police Affairs Commission, minister of defence and the commissioners of Police across the states and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) are joined as defendants.

The applicants want the court to make a declaration that the military operations violate their fundamental human rights to life, dignity of human person, personal liberty, family and private life and therefore illegal.

They prayed further for a declaration that operation Python Dance 3 being planned by the Nigerian Military in the South East is a violation of the rights of the Nigerian public resident in the area and therefore Undemocratic and unconstitutional.

The applicants also want the court to declare that the maintenance of law and order as well as law enforcement within the country is the primary and constitutional responsibility of the Nigeria Police Force and not the Nigeria Armed forces.

The applicants therefore prayed that the defendants be ordered to remove the military from the region and also mandate the Nigeria Police Force to take over law enforcement in the region.

Chief Omirhobo also asked for a perpetual injunction, restraining the Nigerian President and other defendants from using armed forces to perform the duties of the Police.

The human rights lawyer supported his suit with a 112-paragraph affidavit personally deposed to, by the 2nd applicant.

Omirhobo also averred that he is a lawyer from Ughelli in Niger Delta Region of Nigeria being heavily militarized by the Nigerian government.

He swore that as a minister in the temple of justice with the commission to defend the constitution of Nigeria at all times, it has become necessary to seek for the intervention of the Judiciary as a result of the military operations in both regions in spite of public outcry by residents in the affected regions.

He said further that the first and second rounds of both exercises led to the wanton violation of the fundamental and human rights of the Nigerian Public in the South East Zone and Niger Delta Region of Nigeria respectively.

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He accused the military of abducting citizens of the regions, many of whom still remained unaccounted for.

According to him, the people are yet to recover from the trauma and damning effects of the first and second military operations, adding that further operations would be disastrous to the people of the regions.

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