Hanan Buhari, the daughter of President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to respond to allegations levelled against her by a trader, Anthony Okolie, who was detained for 10 weeks for using a telephone line previously used by Hanan.
At the hearing of a suit filed against Hanan on Wednesday, her lawyer, M.E. Sheriff, told the court that there was no response to the allegations because there was no need for a response.
He, however, filed a written address in opposition to the originating motion on notice.
Recall that Okolie had through his lawyer, Tope Akinyode, sued Hanan, the Department of State Services and telecommunications company, MTN, over his 10-week detention in DSS in custody.
In the suit, with number FHC/ASB/CS/3/2020, Okolie is seeking an order to “compel the respondents (DSS, Hanan and MTN) jointly or severally to pay the applicant the sum of N500,000,000 as general and aggravated damages for the gross and unlawful violation of the applicant’s right to acquire moveable properties, freedom of movement and self dignity.”
When the case was heard by Justice Nnamdi Dimgba at a Federal High Court in Asaba on Wednesday, Hanan’s lawyer said there was no response to the allegations yet.
“My lord, we didn’t file a counter-affidavit but a written address.
Justice Dimgba, who seemed surprised, said, “Why didn’t you file a counter-affidavit?”
Responding, Hanan’s lawyer said, “We didn’t file because we haven’t found a reason to file a counter-affidavit.”
The judge subsequently responded, “What do you mean you haven’t seen a reason? Sheriff, how can you not see a reason? Somebody has accused you. Even if it is to say, ‘I didn’t do so’, can’t you respond? You’re saying you did not see a reason. Sheriff, what kind of things is this?”
The lawyer for the DSS, E.E. Daobri, who is also the Principal Staff Officer, Legal Services, DSS, said he did not receive the necessary documents from the DSS headquarters in Abuja on time and thus was unable to file a counter-affidavit.
He asked for a two-week adjournment.
The lawyer to the applicant, Akinyode, asked the court to ensure that the matter was given expedited action, alleging that he and his client were being trailed constantly by the DSS.
Justice Dimgba stated, “If this is true, Daobri, tell your men to stop it. They need their liberty to be able to come to court.”
The judge adjourned the matter till March 3, 2020.