Human rights lawyer, Mr. Femi Falana (SAN), has sued the Federal Capital Development Authority, seeking N100m damages for the injuries he allegedly sustained when he fell into an uncovered manhole on the street of Abuja.
In the suit, marked, CV/0248/17, Falana claimed to have on October 27 fallen into a manhole while walking along the Shehu Shagari Way, Maitama District, Abuja.
He claimed to have suffered a sprain to his right knee when he fell into the uncovered manhole, adding that he had to undergo a series of medical procedures, which caused him severe pain as well as physical, psychological and emotional trauma.
He said he now had to endure carrying a POP cast about and walking with the aid of crutches for at least four weeks, subject to his doctor’s advice.
He said apart from the fact that the accident disrupted his business, he had to pay N209,580 as medical bill at the National Hospital, Abuja where he was rushed to and admitted.
Falana is seeking a court declaration that the FCDA failed in its responsibility of either ensuring that the manhole was properly covered up or putting up a caution sign to warn road users.
“The defendant ought to know that leaving a manhole open in the middle of the road was dangerous for all road users, especially pedestrians.
“The defendant owes the plaintiff a duty of care to ensure his safety while walking on Sheu Shagari Way, Maitama District, Abuja.
“The plaintiff specifically avers that he experiences severe and excruciating pain when he is walking from one point to the other.
“The plaintiff avers that the defendant’s negligence caused the accident which led to the severe sprain on his right knee.
“The defendant is the Federal Capital Development Authority, a body established by an Act of the National Assembly with a duty to construct and maintain such roads, railways, sidings, tramways, bridges, reservoirs, watercourses, buildings, plant and machinery and such other works as may be necessary for, or conducive to, the discharge of its functions under the Act establishing it.”
The lawyer is praying the court to order the FCDA to immediately ensure that all the manholes in Abuja are covered up.
He wants the court to order the defendant to refund his medical bill of N209, 580 and pay him N100m in damages.