The Department of State Services (DSS) has told a Federal High Court sitting in Asaba, Delta state that Anthony Okolie, the man arrested for making use of a sim card formerly belonging to President Buhari’s Daughter was detained for 10 weeks because His offence was a threat to national security.
DSS therefore, pleaded that the case be dismissed by the court.
Anthony Okolie was arrested in July 2019 for using an MTN sim previously owned by Hanan Buhari. After his release, Okolie then proceeded to sue DSS, MTN and Hanan Buhari for violation of his rights.
The Cable reports that the DSS counsel, E.E Daubry made a plea that Okolie’s detention be upheld as the matter was not supposed to be before the court.
He added that Okolie was not charged before the court so that classified information will not be divulged.
In his own words, “The first family is being investigated and that is a national security issue and this representation and misrepresentation were made to people within and outside Nigeria and that warranted a long investigation, his phone had to be analysed,” he said.
“And My Lord, the DSS in performing its responsibility can meet with other agencies because there are other strategic government agencies. My Lord, we have deposed to the fact that classified issues arose in the course of that investigation that made the DSS say ‘no, we cannot go to court with this.’
“We can’t take the applicant to court, cannot file charges. The law requires that if they are staying beyond 48 hours, there must be reasonable circumstances that warrant that. And in this case, we are saying the national security issues that underpin the investigations cannot be revealed to third parties. Now, my lord, if we file under the ACJA that we need an order to keep him in SSS custody, it will mean filing at the registry. Between the registry and when it will be convenient for my lord to hear the application, the information is divulged.
“We urge this court to dismiss this suit with what I call leg-breaking cost.”
The counsel to Okolie, Tope Akinyode, however, prayed the court to dismiss the submission of the DSS counsel.
He said: “The applicant was detained for a period of 10 weeks, 10 weeks my lord. I have read all the provisions of the constitution from the beginning to the end and I have never seen an allowance of such under the law. We ordinarily do not need to labour ourselves. it is a clear violation of the applicant’s human rights”.
Speaking further, he said MTN, ought to have obtained a court order before releasing the details of his client to DSS.
Hanan Buhari, President Buhari’s daughter has however denied asking the DSS to arrest Okolie.
The case has been adjourned to the 1st of April for judgement.
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