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Abiri demands N200m compensation from FG

JONES Abiri, the Bayelsa-based journalist who was held for more than two years by the Department of State Services (DSS), has demanded a compensation of N200 million from the Nigerian government.

Abiri, publisher and editor-in-chief of a local tabloid, ‘Weekly Source’ in Bayelsa was first arrested by the DSS in July 2016 and kept incommunicado until July 2018 when a media outcry forced the DSS to charge him to court on charges of criminal intimidation. Abiri was eventually released on August 15, 2018, after spending some days in Kuje Prison, Abuja, where he had been remanded by the court.

In the application filed by his lawyer, Samuel Ogala, from Falana and Falana Chambers, which came up for hearing on Monday, Abiri demanded the DSS to pay him the sum of N200 million for the violation of his rights and the torture he received while in detention.

Abiri’s lawyers noted that the prolonged detention without trial violates their client’s right to personal liberty, the dignity of a person, freedom of association and fair hearing.

However, when the case was called up, counsel to the DSS, G. O. Agbadua, asked the court for more time to enable him to serve his client the court papers and also prepare an appropriate defence.

The case was then adjourned till September 3rd, 2018 for continuation.

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