Court Grants 8 Ile-Epo Market Leaders Bail After 120 Days In Detention

* Pix source: Newtelegraph

 

 

Eight leaders of Araromi/Ile-Epo Oke-Odo Market, In Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos State who have been in prison custody since April 13, 2018, today, regained their freedom, as a Federal High Court sitting in Lagos granted their bail application filed before the court.

The eight market leaders are: Livinus Njoku, 54, Lawal Dan Galadima, 54, Tafeek Olanikami, 83, Musa Mohammed, 56, Nadir Adamu Ango, 42, Falano Williams, 74, Musiliu Anobi, 30, and Obi Ndubisi.

All the market leaders were arrested and remanded in prison custody, since April 13, by the police headquarters Abuja, for allegedly opposing and stopping the redevelopment and reconstruction of the Araromi/Ile-Epo-oba market, in Alimosho Local government of the state.

Justice (Processor) Chuka Obiozor, who presided over the court, granted all the market leaders to bail, after their pleas were taken on the three counts charge bordering on willful destruction of government properties, threat to kill Adeyanju and Haruna Ismail, Directors of Jenrich Nigeria Limited who were awarded contract by Alimosho-LGA to reconstruct the motor park, in the market and attacked and mercilessly beat Taofeek Yusuf and Isa Owonikoko.

The offences according to the prosecutor, Mr. Simon Lough, an Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), are contrary to and punishable under Sections 1 (2) and 15(1)(b) of Terrorism (prevention) Amendment Act 2013.

The market leaders all pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Following their pleas of innocence to the charge, their lawyers, M. O. Atanda, Dele Falana, and Felix Olatunji, pleaded with the court to grant their clients bail in the most liberal terms.

In particular, defence counsels told the court that the defendants had earlier obtained an order from Justice Okiki-Olu Igile of a Lagos High Court, in a fundamental rights enforcement suit filed against the police, wherein the judge ordered that all the market leaders be released forthwith.

Atanda also told the court that when they were about securing the release of the market leaders from the prison custody, the police filed another charge before Justice Ayotunde Faji of Federal High Court, Lagos, and that since the filing of the charge, the police have not appear in court to arraign the defendants.

They therefore urged the court to grant the bail applications of their clients. Adding that they were ready to stand as sureties for all the defendants, if the court will release them to thier counsels.

Responding, the Prosecutor, ACP Lough, while urging the court to discountenance the defendants’ bail applications, said their lawyers have not present before the court good reasons while the applications should be granted.

The prosecutor also told the court that when the police were ready to arraign the defendants, one of their lawyers, objected to their plea been taken on the ground that they were not prepared.

But Justice Obiozor, after perusing all the applications filed by both parties, ruled that he is satisfied with the submissions of the defendants’ lawyer, especially, seeing that the High Court had earlier ordered that all the defendants should be released, the ordered he said was not challenged by the prosecution.

Consequently, Justice Obiozor admitted each of the defendants to bail in the sum of N10 million with one surety each.

The judge also ordered that one surety can stand for all the defendants.

The surety, according to the judge, must show evidence of three years tax payment, two current photo passports and means of livelihood, all these the judge ordered should be verified by the Court’s Deputy Chief Registrar (DCR).

The judge also ordered that the defendants can be released to their lawyers upon filing undertaken before the court, pending the fulfilment of the bail terms within seven days.

Prior to the arraignment of the market leaders, the judge had declined to take their pleas, due to allegations of four counts charge of conspiracy to commit murder and murder leveled against the traders.

Justice Obiozor told the prosecutor that Federal High Court, have no jurisdiction to entertained murder charges.

Following the decision of the court, the prosecutor urged the court to expunge all the murder related charges against all the defendants.

Count five : “That you Livinus Njoku ‘M’ 57yrs of No. 41 Orusumbare Street, Iyana-Ipaja, Lagos, Lawal Dan alad’lma ‘M’ 54yrs of Oke-Odo Lagos, Taofeek Olanikami ‘M’ 78yrs of No. 68 Akinola Street, Oke-Odo Lagos, Musa Mohammed ‘M’ 56yrs of Oke-Odo Lagos, Nasiru Adamu Ango ‘M’ 42yrs of No.14, Olowe Street ,Oke-Odo Lagos, Falano Williams ‘M’ 74 yrs 0’ No. 46, Musili Street Orile Agege Lagos, Wasiu Anobi ‘M’ 30yrs of Oke~ Odo Lagos, Obi Ndubisi ‘M’ 38yrs of No. 3 Ayodele Street Ekoro Lagos, and (Mrs. Banke Njoku ‘f’, Yakubu Ahmed ‘M’ 39yrs, Idowu Taiwo ‘M’ 49yrs, Isaac Adeniyi ‘M’ , Kazeem Romanu ‘M’ 4Syrs Fadare Alani ‘M’ 49yrs, and unknown soldiers and armed thugs) now at large on or about 4th August, 2015 at Ile-Epo/Oke-Odo Market in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos Within the jurisdiction of this court while acting in concert wilfully destroyed Government property to wit: Iron fence, structures and landscaping in Ile-Epo/Oke-Odo Market property of Alimosho LGA and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 1 (2) of Terrorism (prevention) Amendment Act 2013.

Count Six: “That you Livinus Njoku ‘M’ S7yrs of No. 41 Orusumbare Street, IyanaIpaja, Lagos, Lawal Dan Galadima ‘M’ 54yrs of Oke~Odo Lagos, Taofeek Olanikami ‘M’ 78yrs of No. 68 Akinola Street, Oke-Odo Lagos, Musa Mohammad ‘M’ 56yrs of Oke-Odo Lagos, Nasiru Adamu Ango ‘M’ 42yrs of No.14, Olowe Street ,Oke-Odo Lagos, Falano Williams ‘M’ 74 yrs of No. 46, Musili Street Orile Agege Lagos, Wasiu Anobi ‘M’ 30yrs of OkeOdo Lagos, Obi Ndubisi ‘M’ 38yrs of No. 3 Ayodele Street Ekoro Lagos, and (Mrs. Banke Njoku ‘f’, Yakubu Ahmed ‘M’ 39yrs, Idowu Taiwo ‘M’ 49yrs, Isaac Adeniyi ‘M’ , Kazeem Romanu ‘M’ 45yrs Fadare Alani ‘M’ 49yrs, and unknown soldiers and armed thugs) now at large on or about 4‘“ August, 2015 at Ile-Epo/Oke-Odo Market in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos within the jurisdiction of this court while acting threatened to kill Richard Adeyanju and Haruna Ismail, Directors of Jenrich Nigeria Limited who were awarded contract by Alimosho-LGA to reconstruct the motor park in Ile-Epo/Oke-Odo market if you ever see them in the market and thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 15(1)(b) of Terrorism (prevention) Amendment Act 2013.

Count Seven: “That you Livinus Njoku ‘M’ S7yrs of No. 41 Orusumbare Street, IyanaIpaja, Lagos, Lawal Dan Galadima ‘M’ S4yrs of Oke-Odo Lagos, Taofeek Olanikami ‘M’ 78yrs of No. 68 Akinola Street, Oke-Odo Lagos, Musa Mohammed ‘M’ 56yrs of Oke-Odo Lagos, Nasiru Adamu Ango ‘M’ 42yrs of No.14, Olowe Street ,Oke-Odo Lagos, Falano Williams ‘M’ 74 yrs of No. 46, Musili Street Orile Agege Lagos, Wasiu Anobi ‘M’ 30yrs of OkeOdo Lagos, Obi Ndubisi ‘M’ 38yrs of No. 3 Ayodele Street Ekoro Lagos, and (Mrs. Banke Njoku ‘f’, Yakubu Ahmed ‘M’ 39yrs, Idowu Taiwo ‘M’ 49yrs, Isaac Adeniyi ‘M’ , Kazeem Romanu ‘M’ 45yrs Fadare Alani ‘M’ 49yrs, and unknown soldiers and armed thugs) now at large on or about 4‘” August, 2015 at Ile-Epo/Oke-Odo Market ‘in Alimosho Local Government Area of Lagos within the jurisdiction of this court while acting in concert attacked and mercilessly beat Taofeek Yusuf and Isa Owonikoko and inflicted injuries on them which resulted to their death and thereby committed an offence contrary to section 1(2) of Terrorism (prevention) Amended Act, 2013

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