Court orders Lagos, Police to pay N5m to driver assaulted during #EndSARS anniversary

ADEDOTUN Clement, an Uber driver who was publicly attacked, assaulted and humiliated by officials of the Lagos State Neighbourhood Safety Agency and the Nigeria Police Force during the first anniversary of the #EndSARS protests in 2021, has been awarded N5 million compensation.

A Lagos Federal High Court on Tuesday, March 14, ordered the Lagos State Government and the Nigeria Police Force to pay N5 million as compensation to the driver.

The court condemned the torture of the driver by officials of the Lagos State Government and the Nigeria Police Force.

On October 20, 2021, Clement was carrying a passenger from the Island to the Mainland part of Lagos when he encountered the #EndSARS protest at the Lekki Toll Gate, which was disrupted by officials of Lagos State government and the police.

When the protest was dispersed using tear gas canisters, Clement temporarily abandoned his car like other motorists and ran for his life. However, when he returned to pick up his car, he was accosted, dragged, tortured, and manhandled by the officers who refused to heed his entreaties that he was an Uber driver and only wanted to retrieve his car.






     

     

    The assault was captured on video and reported in the media, leading to public condemnation.

    Following this, Lagos-based human rights lawyer and activist Inibehe Effiong sued the Lagos State Government, the Lagos State Neighbourhood Safety Agency, the Attorney General of Lagos, and the Nigeria Police.

    Delivering judgment in the fundamental rights case on Tuesday, March 14, Justice A. L. Allagoa held that the treatment meted on the driver amounted to a violation of his right to dignity and awarded the sum of N5 million as damages to him.

    Clement’s counsel, Effiong, expressed appreciation to the court for upholding his client’s rights and called on the Lagos State governor, Babjide Sanwo-Olu, to comply with the judgment and pay the compensation in line with his public declaration that he has compensated victims connected with the #EndSARS protests.

    You can reach out to me on Twitter via: vincent_ufuoma

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