Activist Sues Supreme Court For Failure To Comply With FOI Act

BEVERLY HILLS, September 14, (THEWILL) – Human rights activist, Sesugh Akume has sued the Supreme Court and its Registrar, Mrs. Hajaratu Mustapha for damages of N500, 000 over failure to comply with a request brought pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, 2011.

The case filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja was instituted vide an originating summons marked FHC/ABJ/CS/1161/2020 and brought pursuant to Sections 4(A)(B) and 7(1)(2)(3)(4)(5) of the Freedom of Information Act 2011.

Akume is seeking “an order of declaration that the Supreme Court and its Registrar, have “defaulted and breached FoI Act 2011, thereby committed an offence and are liable to pay the sum of N500,000 for the FoI request they defaulted i.e being the statutory fine for neglecting and refusing to comply with the provisions of the FoI Act 2011.”

Akume alleged that he made a request on the 20th day of August , 2020, at the Supreme Court, requesting information on the matter of Speaker, Ondo House of Assembly v Martins Alo, a landmark lawsuit. He added that he sought to know the “suit number and its status; whether the matter filed since 2018 had been heard with the judgement granted or not; or whether it had not been heard with a date fixed or not yet, but he got no response whatsoever from the Supreme Court.”

Sesugh Akume
Sesugh Akume

Besides, he alleged that he “gave them a letter dated 7th day of September, 2020, informing them that they have seven days within which to comply in which they failed to so do”.

While contending that the defendants have violated Sections 4(a)(b) and 7(5) of the Freedom of Information Act, 2011, Akume however urged the Court to order the respondents to comply with his request.