For causing a grievous bodily harm and a permanent loss of reproductive organs to a lady, Justice John Tsoho of a Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos has awarded N100 million as damages against the Nigerian Navy and one of its officers.
The court held that the negligence of Commander C.T Olowu resulted in grievous bodily harm and permanent loss of the reproductive organs of Joy Bassey.
Justice Tsoho in his verdict noted that there was no amount of monetary damages that could adequately compensate Mrs. Bassey for the trauma she has been consigned to for the rest of her life by the sad development.
The court granted interest of five percent on the judgment sum to be payable from the date of judgment until the amount was totally liquidated.
The plaintiff had filed the suit against the Nigerian Navy and Olowu, said to be a Consultant Gynecologist/Surgeon with the agency for negligence.
The suit was filed on behalf of the plaintiff by Mrs. Marian Jones from the Lagos branch of the International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA).
The plaintiff was admitted at the Nigerian Medical Centre while in labour, but the negligence of Olowu was said to have resulted in the death of the baby and also a permanent damage to her womb to the extent that the plaintiff could no longer bear a child.
It was alleged that the negligence on the part of the defendants (Navy and Olowu) occasioned dysuria for the plaintiff which makes her now to frequently go to the rest room because her bladder size/capacity had decreased.
She also developed a cervical stump which was leaking of urine, while her foetus was also lying completely outside the uterine cavity and the placenta completely detached from the uterus.
Justice Tsoho held: “It is beyond denial that the unmitigated negligence and most unprofessional conduct of Commander Olowu has ruined the plaintiff’s marriage, destroyed her fertility and deprived her of peace and happiness.
“In short, all attributes of womanhood in the plaintiff have been ruined and her humanity generally, grossly diminished for life,” the judge held.
The defendants were alleged to have refused to enter any defence to the suit despite being aware of all the processes filed in the matter.