Family and friends of Isa Umar have called on the Department of State Services to release their son.
Umar was arrested on November 26, 2014 on suspicion of terrorism. He was picked up by unidentified soldiers at his family’s compound and handed over to the DSS.
His childhood friend, Anas Adamu, said the family sued the Federal Government over the unlawful detention of their son and the court on March 7, 2017, ordered his immediate release and the payment of N1m as fine and N50,000 as compensation but the DSS failed to comply.
A copy of the judgment delivered by Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court in Kaduna, which was seen by SaharaReporters stated that the arrest and torture of Umar contravened Section 34, 35 and 36 of the constitution.
Justice Nwite then declared that the act of the respondent (DSS) detaining the applicant (Aliyu) in their custody for two years without charging him to any court of competent jurisdiction was unconstitutional and in contradiction of Nigeria’s enabling laws.
Adamu said despite the judgement, the DSS had refused to release Umar and called on Nigerians to intervene as his parents were totally depressed and traumatised.
He said, “Isa Umar is a childhood friend of mine. We attended the same primary school in Samaru (Ibrahim memorial Academy) before my dad removed and transferred me to ABU Staff School where I wrote my common entrance and got admission into Demonstration Secondary School, ABU Main campus, Zaria.
“We were opportune to secure admission into our university of choice – Ahmadu Bello University in the same year 2011. While I was admitted to study Engineering, Isa Umar was offered Library and Information Science. His studies proceeded smoothly until his IT when the incident happened.
“One day, he told me to accompany him to a school inside Samaru to go and conduct oral exams for the adult students (mostly married women) in the month of Ramadan around 2014 but I cannot recall the exact date.
“I woke up the next morning only to hear that Isa Umar was arrested in his house at night by the DSS and they also arrested some of his friends that slept in a mosque (Khalid bin Walid Masjid) near his family house because Isa Umar was also part of the mosque committee and use to teach some of his students in the mosque.
“After ten days of detention, Isa Umar and co were all released without charge. He returned to Zaria and school. After a few months, some officials from DSS raided his house at night on the 26th of November, 2014, and took Isa Umar away.
“Isa Umar is the last born in his family which made his mum and dad in bitter sorrow and agony. His mum is totally depressed and traumatized. In 2017, a court ordered his release and also ordered some money to be given to them as damages but neither the money was given to him as damages nor was he released from custody.
“I have a full assurance that if at all he was not abducted from the onset, Isa could have graduated with an excellent result. He was in 300L with just a year left to graduate from the prestigious Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, and maybe by now he might have been pursuing his PhD abroad or in any of our Nigerian universities.
“I ask Almighty Allah in His infinite mercy to return him back to his family peacefully. I call on the office of the President, the President of the Senate and the Director of SSS and all the relevant authorities to check on the affairs of this innocent patriotic Nigerian student that is forgotten in DSS custody to do justice for him and release him back to his community and his family.”