The Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has finally commenced hearing of the appeal against judgement in the fundamental human rights suit between Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB), the Nigeria Police Force (NPF), a journalist, Desmond Utomwen and six others.
The hearing is coming 11 years after the journalist, Utomwen, who was a staff of The News Magazine, was brutalised, arrested and detained at the Garki Police Station in December 2009 by police officers and a GTB employee, while on official assignment.
Utomwen had challenged the abuse in court in a bid to enforce his fundamental human rights and secured a judgement against the defendants in which the Court awarded him N100million damages in October 2013.
However, the NPF and the bank appealed the judgement, while efforts to secure a date for hearing at the Court of Appeal took another seven years before a date was fixed for the hearing.
Yesterday, September 22, 2020, at the scheduled sitting of the court, the appeal was adjourned after the parties argued their motions and applications filed before the court.
Motion for adjournment was premised on the appellant’s requirement to serve the NPF and their agents in the suit, so that the appeal could be heard. The matter was adjourned to November 5, 2020.