By Jonathan Ugbal
An Abuja Magistrate Court sitting in Wuse Zone 2 has discharged and acquitted four out of the six defendants brought before it on November 6, 2020 for alleged conspiracy, unlawful assembly and conduct likely to cause breach of public peace.
Five protesters who had joined the second wave of the #EndSARS protest and a journalist were arrested by the police on Friday, November 6, 2020.
They were then arraigned before a Chief Magistrate in charge of Court 8, Abdulrazak Eneye who ordered the counsel to the defendants, Tope Akinyode to file a formal bail application before the court after refusing the oral application for bail.
And, on November 11, 2020 the defendants were admitted to bail with a bail bond of 50,000 from six sureties and the matter adjourned until January 25, 2021.
And, upon resumption of hearing on Monday, counsel to the defendants, Akwaji DonHenry sought to split the case between the four defendants present in court and the two absent.
“One defendant, a minor, was absent as he traveled with his parents while the other one is sick and is undergoing traditional treatment and medication. So, we had to apply to the court to treat the four defendants in court and when that was granted, we asked the court to discharged and acquit them which was granted,” Akwaji told this reporter in a telephone interview.
Those acquitted include journalist, Oluwatosin Adeniji for lack of diligent prosecution.
And, Akwaji said; “clearly, the Police which is the prosecution did not have any case over them.”
He expressed optimism that the remaining two defendants will walk free on the next adjourned date which is March 24th.
“We hope to provide the other two defendants by the next adjourned date or we will ask the court to try them in absentia,” he said.
However, Magistrate Eneye had ordered that if the defendants were not produced, their bail will be revoked.
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