This is 2017 and while many of us are looking on with hope for the year to be great and better than last year, others are still living in 2016, regretting those things which we would have done to make us better and the rest of us are trying to clean up the mess of the past few months. A mess we never created but we were unfortunate to fall victims to because of executive lawlessness of State Officials especially the custom officers and/or Federal Road Safety Corps or Vehicle Inspection Officers.

Now here is the story of a friend- Promise Ogbadu  that can cheer us up and give us hope to rise above our present, past or even futuristic predicament with these Government Officials who thinks they are Lords and are untouchable. Provided we are in the right, this story will inspire us and propel us to know that we can fight back against injustice in Nigeria as no hope is lost.

He writes:

On precisely 15th November, 2015, one man called Shedrach and another lady  being of the profession we commonly call Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIO) impounded my car on the pretext that I was an unlicensed driver, and that my car lights were defective. These two accusations were false as they very well knew. They recklessly thought I was the everyday road user they could easily intimidate. (I usually don’t brag about being a lawyer. I consider it a tool, not a title).

Despite their threats, I refused paying their dubious and questionable monetary demands. They were asking for N13,000 then- an amount I could pay without breaking a sweat; but my conscience disallowed me from being that irresponsible.

Being very much engaged with my then pending wedding preparations and thereafter needing to go to the moon with my new bride, I had no time for them and my lovely 406 which they recklessly and wantonly impounded.

Some three months later, after Leedya and I had gone to the moon and back (we have permanently relocated to the moon), I sued the VIO Officers and a few weeks later, my car was released on the High Court of Federal Capital Territory order.

You may be wondering why the story. Well, it’s like this; about 4pm this evening(15 December, 2016), my lawyer called me (lawyers are also entitled to their own lawyers, it is a constitutional right) intimating me that the Judge-Justice Hussein Baba of the High Court of FCT  had just delivered his judgment and by same, demonstrated that executive recklessness does not pay. Shedrach and his VIO colleagues have been directed to pay me N7,000,000:00k (seven million naira only) in special and punitive damages.

The money may not be much, but one thing is certain, the Judge has given a much needed direction to the executive, and the Abuja VIO in particular, on the extent of their statutory mandate/powers. I hope they heard it, because I will keep on suing their asses until they know what to do and what not to do to citizens! By the way, I had a photocopy of my driver’s license, an affidavit of loss and a police extract but their quarrel was that I wasn’t carrying the original copy of my driver’s license. I will never forget the words of Shedrach. He said ‘I will treat you like an unlicensed driver.’ This strongly connotes he knew what he was doing when he impounded my car. He wanted to intimidate me into giving him money, but I refused to pay a dime.

*Promise Ogbadu is a  and has always been a vibrant practicing lawyer who has the knack to always do the right thing and stand for justice at all cost. He is also the managing partner of Atalanta Partners at Gateway Plaza(2nd Floor-Left Wing) Plot 208, Zakariyah Maimalari Road,  Central Business Area, Abuja.*

By floramichaels

Hi, I am Flora Ngo-Martins. I love writing and I am passionate about fashion, stories, news and food. Sometimes I get a little bit serious but that's alright, I can also be mischievous. I also like to analyse stuffs people do and sometimes judge.*wink* Most of all, I love to influence the lives of people positively and tell people's stories from a totally different perspective. Feel free to contact me if you have any suggestions or....

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