A Federal High Court sitting in the Federal Capital Territory Apo, Abuja, has ruled that the alleged looters’ list released by the Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed is not a violation of the personal human rights of those named on the list.
In its ruling on Tuesday, the court said that the Federal Government’s alleged looters’ list released earlier in the year does not constitute a violation of the rights to presumption of innocence of those named.
Delivering his judgment in a suit filed by the owner DAAR Communications, the parent company of the African Independent Television (AIT) and Ray Power Radio, Chief Raymond Dokpesi, seeking the court’s declaration of the looters’ list as void, Justice Olukayode Adeniyi, was of the view that the suit lacked merit.
The court elaborated further on its ruling saying that the disclosure of the alleged looters’ list by Alhaji Lai Mohammed on behalf of the Federal Government in March of 2018 does not carry any force of law as the minister is neither the judge nor the prosecutor in the criminal case against Dokpesi pending before the Federal High Court.
The judge further held the view that if Dokpesi was aggrieved by the list, he should seek remedy by instituting a libel/slander suit instead.
In a separate case involving the Minister of information and Dokpesi however in which the latter slammed a defamation suit against the former, the court adjourned hearing till November 9.
The case had been delayed due to the non appearance of the Ministers lawyers in court after which Lai Mohammed had asked for the case to be dismissed on those grounds.
The court however dismissed the objection of the minister and fixed November 9 for hearing of the substantive suit.