JUST IN: Court Finally Awards N1million Damages Against Former Minister, Kenneth Gbagi, Over Torture Of Ex-staff

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The Delta State High Court in Warri has awarded a N1 million judgement against a former Minister of State for Education, Kenneth Gbagi over alleged harassment, unlawful detention and torture of one Mr. Victor Ephraim.

Justice Vera Agbodje entered judgment against Mr. Gbagi and his hotel, Signatious Hotel And Suites Limited in suit No. EHC/FHR/80/2020.

The claimant had instituted the suit against the former minister seeking redress over the violations of his fundamental rights. He alleged that he was unlawfully detained, tortured and dehumanized by Mr. Gbagi and the armed policemen attached to him.

What the claimant told the court

  • The claimant, Mr. Ephriam who is a former staff of the minister alleged that on September 17 and 18, 2020 Mr. Gbagi used the mobile policemen attached to him to forcefully strip him naked, whisk him away in the boot of his car to his country home which is a 1-hour drive from the hotel.
  • He told the court that he was illegally held in custody by Mr. Gbagi alongside three other female staff of the hotel who were also stripped naked and paraded publicly on the allegation that they failed to remit money paid by a hotel guest.
  • The claimant submitted that he was tortured and dehumanized while in Mr. Gbagi’s unlawful custody and his ATM cards were collected and all the money in his accounts transferred to the hotel’s account.

How the judge ruled

Delivering judgement, the judge held that the story presented by the former minister was false, concocted and not believable.

The court said it found that Mr. Gbagi took laws into his own hands by torturing his ex-staff.