Omoyele Sowore, Publisher of Sahara Reporters and convener of RevolutionNow movement, has said he will sue the Nigeria Police Force for torture after he was arrested on New Year’s Eve while he was protesting along with other activists.
Sowore’s lawyer, Femi Falana, said this in a statement on Saturday.
Falana said his client was badly beaten and subjected to dehumanising conditions in contravention of the Anti-Torture Act.
“Since Mr. Sowore’s fundamental right to dignity has been recklessly violated by the police we have his instructions to press for charges against all the officers who subjected him to physical and mental torture in contravention of the letter and spirit of the provisions of the Anti Torture Act of 2017,” he said.
Falana said the police are holding Soowre for allegedly violating COVID-19 protocols but he has been denied bail for two days even though his offence is bailable by law, suggesting that they were waiting for “orders from above”.
The lawyer said his client had been tortured and locked up in a detention facility along with armed robbery suspects.
“The police officers who arrested Mr. Omoyele Sowore at Abuja on January 31, 2020, subjected him to severe beating and left him with bruises all over his body. As if that was not enough he has been locked up in the midst of armed robbery suspects at a notorious detention facility called abattoir maintained by the disbanded Special Anti Robbery Squad in Abuja.
“The physical torture to Mr. Sowore was prolonged by the refusal of the police to provide him with medical attention. Although Mr. Sowore’s injuries are being treated by his personal physician, the police authorities have refused the application of the detainee for bail even though the alleged offence of breaching COVID-19 regulations is ‘bailable’,” he said.