A Federal High Court in Abuja, Friday, ordered security agencies in Kogi State to ensure that no harm befalls Murtala Ajaka, governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) in the November election in the state.
Specifically, the court presided over by Justice Inyang Ekwo said the Department of State Security (DSS) and the Nigeria Police must secure Ajaka to ensure that nothing happens to him till the election is held.
The re-affirmed order became necessary after Ajaka sought protection of law enforcement agents following barrage of threats to his life by persons suspected to be agents of the state government.
Ajaka, whose popularity has shadowed those of the incumbent and his handpicked successor, is miles ahead in opinion polls to clinch the governorship in the November election. However, his campaign in the state has been impaired by rising threats to his life and those of his associates.
Justice Ekwo ruled that security agencies must provide “maximum security” to the SDP candidate.
Justice Ekwo reaffirmed the order at the commencement of hearing in the suit instituted by Ajaka against the Governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello and others.
The judge warned that since all the parties have submitted themselves before the court, they should not take steps to overreach themselves, or that would jeopardize the trial at the court.
Justice Ekwo subsequently adjourned hearing to September 21.
Ajaka had dragged Kogi governor to court over alleged threat to his life and family members, as well as arresting and prosecuting him over alleged complicity in terrorism activities.
Before commencement of trial, he had, on July 11, brought an exparte application praying the court to restrain the security agencies from arresting, inviting, detaining or threatening the applicant’s life and property pending the hearing and determination of the substantive suit.
The affected security agencies, which include the Chief of Defence Staff, army, navy, DSS and police by the order, are to guarantee the safety of the SDP candidate, pending the hearing of a suit filed before the court.