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COVID-19: Court orders Lagos to deposit lecturer’s passport with registrar

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A Lagos State High Court has ordered the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu; the state Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi; and one Dr Bowale of the OPD Mainland Hospital, to deposit the passport of a lecturer at the Olabisi Onabanjo University, Ago Iwoye, Ogun State, Adesola Adeleke, and that of her daughter, Adewumi, to the Chief Registrar of the Lagos State High Court.

Justice L.F. Oluyemi of the High Court 27, Ikeja, who gave the order following a motion ex parte filed by the applicant (Adesola), said the travel documents must be deposited with the chief registrar within seven days of the ruling.

Counsel for the lecturer, Dr Olutayo Oyewale, who is based in Ibadan, Oyo State, said in an interview with our correspondent on Wednesday that the court made the order on Tuesday.

Adesola, a chemical science lecturer, recently returned to Nigeria from South Africa and was said to have tested positive for COVID-19 in Lagos.

But while faulting the test result, the lecturer said it was said to be from a male sample.

She said the tests she did in South Africa before her departure to Nigeria and the one she did on arrival in Lagos returned negative, wondering where the positive result came from.

Adesola said she was made to undergo psychological trauma when she was declared wanted in a publication by the Lagos State Government and demanded N65m damages in the suit she instituted before the court.

The counsel said, “We filed a motion on notice dated September  8, 2021, wherein we asked the court to declare that the continuous seizure of the Nigerian passport of our client and her daughter’s passport by the Lagos State Government and others as a violation of their fundamental rights as stated by the 1999 Constitution.

“We filed a motion ex parte dated November 8, 2021, wherein we asked the court to compel the respondents to deposit the Nigerian passport of our client and that of her daughter with the chief registrar of the court pending the hearing and determination of the motion on notice. The matter came up last Tuesday and the court said we should serve Lagos State and all the parties and it was adjourned till November 16.

“They were served as ordered by the court, but they were not in court and were not represented by any counsel. The court ruled that they (the Commissioner for Health and Dr Bowale) should deposit the passport of our client with No. AO7745471 and that of her daughter with No. AO9427630 with the chief registrar of the Lagos State High Court within seven days when the order was made.”

Our correspondent learnt that the matter was adjourned till January 19, 2022, for the hearing of the main application.

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