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Court to deliver ruling in Baba Ijesha’s bail application appeal September 19

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An Ikeja special offences court on Wednesday fixed September 19 to deliver ruling in the bail application filed the convicted Nollywoord actor, James Olarewaju, alias, Baba Ijesha.

The embattled actor is seeking a bail for an appeal for the five years conviction of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl.

Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo adjourned for ruling following the argument of the counsel on whether the convict had met special circumstances for court to grant him bail.

The defence counsel, Mr Chukwudi Adiukwu, informed the court that a notice for bail pending appeal has been submitted in pursuant to Section 6 (6) of the 1999 Constitution as amended and Section 51 of the High Court law of Lagos State, administration of criminal justice law.

Adiukwu argued that the application admitted the applicant to bail, either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions.

He said the application was brought before the court due to difficulty in getting a date at the Court of Appeal.

“My lord, this application is before this court because getting a date at the court of appeal might be difficult, considering the number of cases before them.

“We also take into cognizance the prison month calendar, the convict would have served his five years concurrent jail term within three years and six months, before the hearing might take place at the appeal court.

“In addition my lord, the convict was of good conduct before the court during his trial and he was never absent till the judgment.

“We urge the court to consider the special circumstances at granting bail to the convict,” he said.

The State Prosecution Counsel, Mrs Omowunmi Bajulaye-Bishi, however, argued that the defence failed in its address to establish the special circumstances which might grant the convict bail.

“My lord, the defence has failed woefully in addressing the special circumstances which can be used to grant the convict bail.

“We humbly urge the court to to refuse the bail application of the convict,” Bajulaye-Bishi said.

Meanwhile, the court had on July 14 sentenced the embattled actor to five-years imprisonment for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl.

The court held that the prosecution had successfully proven the charge of sexual assault of a minor and indecent treatment of a minor against the convict.

The judge, however, discharged and acquitted him of count one and six which were sexual assault by penetration (which took place in 2014) and attempted sexual assault by penetration, which took place in 2021).

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NAF bombs terrorists hideouts in Borno

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The Air Component of Operation Hadin Kai, OPHK, and the Nigerien Air Force on Tuesday eliminated scores of terrorists and destroyed their hideouts in Damasak and Mobbar local government areas of Borno State.

A statement by the Director, Public Relations and Information of NAF, AVM Edward Gabkwet, on Wednesday in Abuja, said that the interdictions were under the Multi-National Joint Task Force, MNJTF.

Gabkwet said the terrorists had attempted to attack troops of Sector 4 of the MNJTF at Lada, a border town between Niger Republic and Nigeria, and subsequently fled across the border into Nigeria.

According to him, the fleeing terrorists who were on eight motorcycles were later tracked to two locations in Zarri village, about 28 kilometers east of Damasak and Mala Alide in Mobbar areas of Borno.

He further stated that they were observed hibernating in the village with their motorcycles hidden under trees.

“Subsequently, airstrikes from the Air Component of OPHK and Nigerien Air Force, under the watchful eye of Niger’s Intelligence Surveillance Reconnaissance (ISR) aircraft, struck the terrorists’ locations.

“Real-time ISR footage later confirmed numerous terrorists were eliminated and several structures within the targeted areas destroyed.

“Collaborative efforts of this nature have continued to yield positive outcomes on both sides of the border.

“It has also led to the reduction in terrorism and other forms of cross-border crimes perpetrated by criminals crisis-crossing the borders to evade justice,” he added.

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Sex Scandal: We won’t oppose any sanction against lecturer — ASUU UNN

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The Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) has said that the union would not oppose any sanction against the lecturer allegedly involved in sex scandal in a video trending in the social media.

Chairperson of ASUU, University of Nigeria Nsukka, (UNN), Dr Oyibo Eze said this in Nsukka on Tuesday while reacting to the alleged attempt by a lecturer in UNN to have sex with a female student in his office on Monday.

“ASUU will not oppose any sanction if after investigations, the suspect is found guilty of allegation to have attempted to have sex with a female student in his office.

“We should all know that every action has its consequences,” he said.

He said that ASUU condemned the alleged act by the lecturer identified as Mr. David Udom-Udom of the Social Science Unit, School of General Studies (GS) of the UNN.

“I saw the trending video of the alleged act yesterday and this morning I went  to GS department and confirmed the incident in the viral video on Monday.

“Lecturers should see students as their children by displaying high sense of discipline, morality and avoid asking sex for mark.

“It is condemnable and that is what happens when a dog eats the bone hung on its neck.

“Our job as lecturers is to teach students not to harass them sexually,” he said.

Reacting to the incident, Comrade Enoch Utazi, the President, Students Union Government (SUG) of the UNN, also condemned the alleged act by Udom to have sex with a student for mark.

Utazi said SUG would follow the matter to its logical conclusion to ensure that the affected randy lecturer was punished according to rules and regulations of the university.

“SUG will ensure this randy lecturer is punished to serve as deterrent to others who exploit female students sexually in order to give them mark,” Utazi said.

Meanwhile, Mr. Chris Alumona, the Chief Security Officer of UNN, when contacted, confirmed the incident and said that the randy lecturer Udom-Udom had been arrested and handed over to the police.

Alumona said his office acted on tip-off from UNN Department of Students Affairs on what was happening on Monday in Udom’s office

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Alleged N8.5bn fraud: You have case to answer, Lagos court tells NIMASA staff, ex-JTF Commander

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Justice Ayokunle Faji of the Federal High Court sitting in Ikoyi, Lagos, on Monday, April 22, 2024, told a former Commander of the Joint Military Task Force, Operation Pulo Shield, Major-General Emmanuel Atewe ( rtd.), and a  staff of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Kime Engonzu, that they have a case to answer in the alleged N8.5bn money laundering case brought against them by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Atewe and Engonzu are standing trial on a 22-count charge bordering on money laundering to the tune of N8, 537,586,798.58, which also involves a former Director-General of NIMASA, Patrick Akpobolokemi, and Josephine Otuaga, also a staff of NIMASA.

One of the counts reads: “That you, Patrick Ziadeke Akpobolokemi, Major General Emmanuel Atewe, Kime Engozu, and Josphine Otuaga, sometime in 2014, in Lagos, within the jurisdiction of this Court, with intent to defraud, conspired amongst yourselves to commit an offence to wit: conversion of the sum of N8,537,586,798.58 property of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency and you thereby committed an offence contrary to Section 18 (a) of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2012 and punishable under Section 15 (3) of the same Act.”

They pleaded “not guilty” to the charges, thereby prompting the commencement of their trial.

In the course of the trial, the prosecution called several witnesses and subsequently closed its case against the defendants.

However, the defendants, rather than open their defence, filed a no-case-submission.

Akpobolokemi had, in a no-case submission, filed by his lawyer, Dr. Joseph Nwobike, SAN, prayed the court for an acquittal without having him present a defence.

Ruling on the no-case submission on Monday, Justice  Faji discharged and acquitted Akpobolokemi  and Otuaga, the fourth defendant.

He however, ruled that Atewe, the second defendant, and Engonzu, the third defendant, should open their defence in counts 12 to 22 of the charge.

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