Tope Akinyode, Human Right Lawyer and National President of Revolutionary Lawyers’ Forum says the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai is waging a war on Nigeria’s constitutional democracy over his disobedience of court order that ordered the release of Lance Corporal Martins Idakpini.
Idakpini’s lawyer in a series of tweets on his official twitter handke said, the disobedience to court order by the military is a COUP D’ETAT on Nigeria’s democracy.
Martins, a lance corporal, was arrested over a viral video on social media criticising the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai, for “failing to provide adequate resources to soldiers combating Boko Haram.”
He said the Chief of Army Staff, Tukur Buratai had failed by “failing to provide adequate resources to soldiers combating Boko Haram” while also calling on President Muhammadu Buhari to be “serious in its fight against insurgency.”
He has since been detained and has remained incommunicado for over a month without access to his lawyer nor family.
Following a rights violation lawsuit, on July 22, Justice AnwuIi Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja granted the soldier access to his lawyer and relative.
The Judge had ordered that Idakpani’s lawyer be granted access to him and also ordered that the Attorney-General of the Federation and the Chief of Army Staff must ensure that the judgment was obeyed.
His tweet read, “Tukur Brutai, Chief of @HQNigerianArmy Staff Shamelessly Disobeys Court Order Over Lance Corporal Martins’ Case.”
“On 22nd July 2020, after I argued an Ex parte motion, the Federal High Court, Abuja ordered the @HQNigerianArmy to grant a detained Soldier, Lance Corporal Martins Immediate access to his lawyer, wife and relatives.”
“Justice AI Chikere agreed with me that at any rate, it is a continuous breach of the detained Soldier’s fundamental human rights to be denied access to his lawyer and family.”
“So the Court ordered the Respondents- the Chief of Army Staff and the Attorney General of the Federation to give way and allow Lance Corporal Martins access to his lawyer and wife.”
“After 3 attempts, Buhari’s appointees, Brutai and the AGF have brazenly disobeyed the valid order of the Federal High Court.”
“Last week Wednesday, after the 2nd attempt to see Lance Corporal Martins failed, I placed a phone call through to the AGF to inform him of the development.”
“The AGF, Malami SAN told me that he has seen the court order I served on him and has minuted on it for action. That the public holiday could affect compliance but I should check back with him after the holiday.”
“I reached the AGF yesterday and told him I’ll be visiting the Army headquarters to ensure compliance, but again, I was rebuffed on the 3rd attempt to see Lance Corporal Martins.”
“There’s clearly no doubt that Buhari lacks respect for court orders and the rule of law and this shameful and pathetic occurrence is being embraced by his appointees.”
“Brutai is waging a war on Nigeria’s constitutional democracy. Disobedience to court order by the military is a COUP D’ETAT on Nigeria’s democracy.”
“Brutai is actively taking steps to return Nigeria to the dark era of military jaunta. This must stop!”