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N20million: Court grants Sowore bail

N20million: Court grants Sowore bail

A Chief Magistrate Court sitting in Abuja on Monday granted bail to Omoyele Sowore in the sum of N20m.

The Sahara Reporters’ publisher, with four other activists, were arrested on New Year’s Eve in Abuja for holding a protest against bad governance, were also granted bail in the sum of N1m each.

The activists, Sowore, Juwon Sanyaolu, Peter Williams, Emmanuel Bulus, and Damilare Adenola are standing trial for alleged unlawful assembly, criminal conspiracy, and inciting public disturbance.

The Magistrate, Mabel Segun-Bello while ruling on the bail application admitted Sowore to bail in the sum of N20million and two sureties in like sum.

Ms Segun-Bello, in her ruling, said the court granted Mr Sowore and his co-accused bail because they did not fall short of the conditions of their detention. She added that the bail was given to fulfill their fundamental rights to liberty.

However, she added that the defendant needed to be kept under close watch to ensure that public peace is maintained.

While filing bail application, the lead defense lawyer, Marshal Abubakar, prayed the court to grant the application based on the most liberal terms.

Mr Sowore’s bail hearing suffered a set back on Friday because neither the defendant or counsel were present in court.

According to Mr Abubakar, the defendants was initially refused bail because the police could not provide them in court. Mr. Abubakar said the Police claimed to have handed the case file to a Deputy Inspector General of Police for further prosecution.

He stated that the DIG who was charged with the responsibility of producing the defendants claimed to have given the case file to the Director of Public Prosecution on the instruction of the Attorney General of the Federation.

The court ordered Sowore to remain in Abuja and must physically report to the court registrar every Monday and Friday pending the hearing and determination of the case against him.

The court further ordered that one of his sureties must be a civil servant not below grade level 12.

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