The Federal High Court of Nigeria has ruled that the arrest of Ja’afar Muhammad by the Nigeria Police at Gwagwalada Teaching Hospital on July 22, 2019, and his subsequent killing on July 24, 2019, at SARS Abattoir, Abuja, were illegal and constituted a gross violation of his fundamental rights as enshrined in Section 33 (1) 35 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
The judgement was delivered by Justice Z. B. Abubakar of the Abuja Division in response to a case filed by Naziru Isah Abdullahi with suit number FHC/ABJ/CD/409/2020.
Justice Abubakar stated that Naziru Isah had provided evidence that his brother, Ja’afar Muhammad, was shot by the police and sustained injuries while participating in a peaceful free Zakzaky protest at the Federal Secretariat, Abuja, on July 22, 2019.
Ja’afar was taken to the Gwagwalada Teaching Hospital for treatment. While at the said hospital, Police stormed the hospital and took him to the SARS Cell, Abattoir, Garki, Abuja.
While in police custody, Ja’afar Muhammad was not given any medical treatment, which led to his death on July 24, 2019.
The judge also stated that it was established that, upon the demise of Ja’afar Muhammad, his corpse was deposited at the Asokoro District Hospital, Abuja.
Consequently, the Court granted an order directing the Inspector General of Police and the Medical Director of Asokoto District Hospital to release the corpse of Ja’afar Muhammad to his family for immediate burial in accordance with Islamic rites.
The court also granted an order directing the Inspector General of Police to pay the applicant the sum of N100,000,000.00 (One Hundred Million Naira) only for the unlawful detention and killing of Ja’afar Muhammad.