The Court of Appeal in Abuja has upheld the N50 million damages against Senator Elisha Abbo for assaulting Ms. Osimibibra Warmate at a sex toy shop in Abuja.
In a video recording that went viral in 2019, Senator Abbo, who represents Adamawa North District, slapped the lady attendant at the sex toy shop more than three times and ordered his security aide to walk the lady out of the shop.
He later issued a public apology for his actions, surrendered to the Police, and was granted bail after meeting a set of administrative conditions for his bond.
However, in September 2020, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, Maitama, ordered the Senator to pay N50 million as compensation to the lady.
Dissatisfied with this ruling, the Senator appealed the decision and sought to overturn the judgement.
However, the Court of Appeal, presided over by a three-member panel led by Justice Jamilu Tukur, in a unanimous decision, dismissed Senator Abbo’s appeal, maintaining that there were no grounds to overturn the verdict given at the Federal High Court.
The Appellate Court supported the stance of Justice Samira Bature, the trial judge, in upholding Ms. Warmate’s claims and awarding damages against Senator Abbo
The Court also dismissed his assertion that he was not afforded a fair hearing and disagreed with Abbo’s position that Ms. Warmate’s allegations of slapping, hair-pulling, and dragging her out of the sex toy shop constituted simple assault rather than a violation of rights.
The Court of Appeal not only upheld the N50 million damages but also awarded an additional N500,000 in favor of Ms. Warmate. The Court addressed and resolved all five issues raised against Senator Abbo.
In its lead judgment that was delivered Danlami Senchi, the Appellate Court held that Senator Abbo’s appeal marked: CA/ABJ/945/2020, lacked any substantive merit.
The Court noted that the evidence provided by Ms. Warmate, including medical reports and video footage of the incident, substantiated the trial court’s original ruling.
“The conduct of the Appellant is sufficiently outrageous to merit the punishment as the facts of the case disclosed flagrant disobedience of the law, especially that the Appellant is an elected Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria,” the Court held.
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