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Card readers’ supplier’s consultant sues SSS over detention

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One of those detained by the State Security Service (SSS) over the Card Reader Machines (CRMs) used for last Saturday’s elections has sued the organisation, alleging illegal detention.

Muhammad Sani Musa, a consultant to Act Technologies Limited, one of the firms engaged by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the supply of the CRMs said he was, on March 24 ,invited, through the telephone to the SSS’ headquarters in Abuja, by the Director General of the SSS and had since been held without any charge.

He stated in a fundamental rights enforcement application he filed before the Federal High Court, Abuja, that he was being detained with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Act Technology (whose name he did not mention) by the SSS since they honoured the security agency’s invitation on March 24 at 1pm.

Musa is, in the application marked: FHC/ABJ/CS/292/2015 filed on March 27 by his lawyer, Mahmud Magaji (SAN), wants the court to order his release and declare his arrest, detention and continued intimidation by the respondent (the SSS) in relation to the card reader issue as illegal, unconstitutional and a violation of his fundamental rights.

Musa, who is praying the court to award N100million as general and exemplary damages against the SSS for its unlawful acts, also seeks an order of perpetual injunction restraining the respondent and its agents from engaging in further harassing, intimidating, arresting and detaining him in relation to the card reader used by the INEC.

He hinged his prayers on three grounds, one of which included that SSS agents unlawful interference with his liberty in connection with the procurement of the card readers constituted an infringement of his  fundamental rights guaranteed by the constitution.

The applicant’s wife, Mrs Sa’adatu Musa, stated, in a supporting affidavit, that the respondent’s officials have refused her access to her husband since he honoured the SSS’ DG’s invitation and had been detained since March 24.

She said her husband is not a staff of Act Technologies, but a consultant who is now being held with the company’s CEO.

Mrs Musa, who prayed the court to order the immediate release of her husband, including granting all the prayers in the application, said if not restrained by the court, the SSS will continue to detain her husband without arraigning him before any court, if the respondent has anything against him.

It was learnt yesterday that the case has been assigned to Justice Adeniyi Ademola, but no hearing date has been communicated to parties.

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