By Ushang Ewa
The trial of Agba Jalingo, a Nigerian journalist facing trial for alleged acts of terrorism and treasonable felony has been put on hold till noon.
Justice Simon Amobeda of the Calabar division of the federal high court said he will rule on applications pending before the Court by midday.
He had earlier stood the case down for 10 minutes shortly after the defense counsel, Adeyinka Olumide-fusika, a senior advocate of Nigeria had stood up to oppose the application for adjournment by the prosecution counsel, Dennis Tarhemba.
And, after reconvening for the case, Fusika in his submission challenging the application of Tarhemba, a Deputy Superintendent of Police, called on the court to strike out such or in the alternative, admit Jalingo to bail if the prayer of the prosecution is granted.
He relied on section 161 sub section 2c of the administration of criminal justice act (ACJA).
But, Tarhemba asked the Court to discountenance the submission of Fusika. He submitted that the prosecution had communicated it’s inability to appear in court to the defense and the court in writing.
He said his witnesses could not be contacted and that the Court being one of record and since no material evidence by way of oath deposed has been filed by the defense, therefore, it’s reliance of the defense on Section 161 Sub 2C of ACJA should not be considered.
But, Olumide-fusika said the prosecutor did not tell the Court the truth. He said having traveled down to Calabar on Tuesday, he was aware the Court of Appeal was not going to sit. However, according to him, Mr. Tarhemba was given the benefit of doubt. But, when they discovered the Court of Appeal, Calabar division was not having a secret trial, he was called to appear in court.
And, Justice Amobeda who was about reading a ruling, was reminded by Fusika that his submission was that if the court adjourns, it should grant Jalingo bail; therefore, an adjournment will be granting the prayers of the prosecution, rose on the matter till noon when he will deliver a ruling.
More details later…
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