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The High Court in Lagos State has scheduled a ruling on Friday regarding the bail application presented by Frederick Nwajagu, also the ‘Eze Ndigbo of Ajao Estate.’
Nwajagu appealed to the court on Tuesday, seeking bail under favourable and lenient conditions.
With terrorism charges against him, the defendant made it clear in court that he has no intention of absconding. After carefully considering arguments from both parties, Justice Yetunde Adesanya has chosen a date for the subsequent proceedings.
The judge granted an adjournment in the case and fixed Friday as the day when the bail application ruling will be issued.
The Eastern Updates reports that Nwajagu’s arraignment came up on May 9, and he was confronted with a nine-count charge. The charges include accusations of attempting acts of terrorism, financing terrorism, engaging in terrorism, and attending a meeting in support of a banned organization.
In the courtroom, the Prosecution Counsel, Mr. Jonathan Ogunsakin, who represents Lagos State, apprised the court that the focus of the day’s session was to present arguments on the bail application.
On the other hand, Mr. E. C. Obiagu, SAN, the counsel representing the defendant, informed the court that the bail application of his client rested on two key grounds.
As stated by Mr. E. C. Obiagu, SAN, the defendant is pursuing two specific requests through the court: Firstly, an order for the court to grant him bail, and secondly, an order to prevent the respondent from re-arresting him should the bail be granted.
He asserted that he took into account all the statements in the affidavit and a written address, while responding to the prosecution’s counter-affidavit through a supplementary and upgraded affidavit.
Mr. E. C. Obiagu, SAN, further informed the court that the bail application was substantiated by a seven-paragraph affidavit. Additionally, he submitted the defendant’s medical report and a written address in support of the application.
He said: ‘Your Lordship has the discretion to grant bail on liberal terms or on self-recognizance. The defendant is not a flight risk. He does not even have an international passport.’
‘The defendant submitted himself to the DSS when invited. He is a widower with six children, therefore can not abandon his children.’
Additionally, Obiagu mentioned that he has addressed the counter-affidavit by responding to specific legal points.
The senior advocate noted that the defendant’s bail was ratified by the lower court, but the strict conditions for bail fulfilment proved to be challenging.
However, Mr. Ogunsakin, the prosecution counsel, argued in his response that the court should decline the defendant’s bail request and opt for a speedy trial instead.
Mr. Ogunsakin contended that the information filed against the defendant in the high court substantially differed from the basis on which he was granted bail at the lower court.
‘The charge brought against the defendant by the Police are materially different from the charge brought against the defendant by the Attorney-General,’ Ogunsakin said.
The Lagos State Government had in a suit marked no: LD/21505C/2023, accused the defendant of violating the provisions of Section 403(2) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
The state noted that the offences further violates Sections 12(a) (c), 18, 21 and 29 of the Terrorism (Prevention & Prohibition) Act, 2022.