ECOWAS Court in session

By Ifeanyi Nwoko

The ECOWAS Court of Justice will, on Monday, deliver judgement in the wrongful eviction case filed by Dr Rose Mbatomon Ako.

Rose is suing five defendants for illegal eviction from her official residence in Abuja, claiming about $520,000 in damages.

The judgment will mark the resumption of the court after it Suspended proceedings amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

A statement issued by the court, on Friday, said the judgement would be delivered by a panel of three justices, led by President of the Court, Hon. Justice Edward Asante.

In the suit filed on Sept. 8, 2017, Dr Rose Mbatomon Ako sued five defendants for illegal eviction from her official residence.

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The five defendants in the suit are the West African Monetary Agency (WAMA); the Director-General, the Chairman, Committee of Governors of the Central Banks of ECOWAS Member States; Attorney General of the Republic of Sierra Leone and the Republic of Sierra Leone.

Ako, the plaintiff and former employee of WAMA, alleged that following the wrongful termination of her appointment, the first and second defendants unlawfully and illegally evicted her from official residence and seized her personal belongings.

According to her, this rendered her an internally displaced person.

She averred that although the court had, in an earlier judgement ECW/CCJ/JUD/01/13 to her suit ECW/CCJ/APP/15/11, awarded compensation in her favour, it was silent on some reliefs she sought for, particularly one that related to the recovery of her personal belongings.

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She is, therefore, seeking among others, orders of the court declaring that the first and second defendants enjoy limited diplomatic immunity and liable, contrary to their argument.

Ako is also praying the court to mandate the first and second defendants to execute the judgment of a High Court of Sierra Leone, which awarded her damages.

She wants the court to compel the defendants to pay special damages estimated at $379,552 and punitive damages in the sum of $150,000, and a mandatory injunction compelling the defendants to release her properties.

The ECOWAS court had on May 13, issued a practice direction on electronic case management and virtual court session to enable it to resume judicial functions and deliver timely justice in line with its mandate. (NAN