A Federal High, sitting in Abuja, has struck out application by Department of State Security (DSS) to detain convener of RevolutionNow, Omoyele Sowore, after 50 days in the security agent’s detention.
The court struck out the detain order application after Sowore’s lawyer, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Femi Falana, argued that the applicant lacked the competence to ask for the detention of Sowore on the basis of national security.
Falana explained that, by virtue of Section 40 of the terrorism prevention act, the DSS, also known as the State Security Service (SSS), is not one of the bodies empowered to detain anybody.
Meanwhile, Sowore’s lawyer told the court that since the detention order had expired and application for renewal withdrawn, the court should make a consequential order and release Sowore.
“If the court wants him I will produce him (Sowore),” he said.
It would be recalled that court was set to hear the federal government’s application to detain the publisher of SaharaReporters, an online news platform, for 50 days.
Shortly after Sowore’s arrest by the security department, the President Muhammadu Buhari administration had filed seven counts bordering on treasonable felony and money laundering.
At the high court, Justice Taiwo Taiwo, who presided over the case, sanctioned DSS’ request to detain Sowore for 45 days pending the conclusion of the security agency’s investigation.
But on the eve of the expiration date, which was 21st of September, the DSS filed a seven-count charge, accusing Sowore of treason, money laundering, and cyberstalking Buhari.