DSS Yet To Release Omoyele Sowore

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) is yet to release Mr Omoyele Sowore, despite meeting his bail conditions.

This is according to a member of Mr Sowore’s legal team, Marshal Abubakar, who led a team of family members to the Headquarters of the Service to receive the convener of #RevolutionNow protest.

Abubakar said after putting calls across to some high-ranking DSS officials, they were told to wait as the persons who could authorise Mr Sowore’s release were unavailable.

He said, “We are asking the DSS to please, in the interest of justice and rule of law, release Mr Omoyele Sowore, to us to go with him.

“We have been here for the past two hours and we are demanding that Mr Sowore be released to the lawyers and his family, in line with the orders of the court.”

READ ALSO: Two Fuel Tankers Fall, Truck Crashes In Lagos

Mr Omoyele Sowore speaks in a courtroom at the Federal High Court in Abuja on October 4, 2019.

 

 

The legal practitioner added, “They have acknowledged the fact that they have received the said court orders; they have also acknowledged the fact that we have been here on two, three occasions.

“We have called all the authorities who we’ve been assessing over the years at the DSS and they told us to wait that they are going to comply. We are waiting for compliance with the court orders.”

This comes barely a day after the DSS said it has received a court order releasing Sowore, but nobody has turned up at the Service’s office to take him delivery.

In a statement on Friday, the Service’s Public Relations Officer, Dr Peter Afunanya, explained that the decision to make the situation public was important for the sake of accountability.

The DSS spokesman noted that the court had been properly briefed about the development and the steps being taken to comply with its order.

He said the DSS would never obstruct justice or disobey court orders but would rather do the needful as soon as the appropriate processes have been concluded.

[UPDATED] DSS Statement Concerning Sowore’s Release ‘Totally Misleading’, Says Falana

 

 

Human Rights lawyer, Mr Femi Falana, has described as totally misleading, a statement by the Department of State Service (DSS), concerning the release of the convener of the #RevolutionNow Protest, Omoyele Sowore.

A Federal High Court had on Wednesday, November 6, ordered the release of Sowore and Bakare, following an application for their bail.

But the anti-graft agency failed to comply with the order, claiming that it was yet to receive it.

The service later confirmed on Friday that it had been served the bail order, but was yet to release the accused.

According to the Public Relations Officer of the Service, Dr Peter Afunanya, nobody turned up at the Service’s office to take delivery of Sowore.

But contrary to the claims of the DSS, Mr Falana noted that they yet again failed to release his clients to the lawyers who waited in vain in the agency’s headquarters for up to four hours on Friday.

Read More: DSS Receives Court Order, Says Nobody Has Come For Sowore

He, thereafter, stated that two lawyers from his law firm had been directed to contact the management of the DSS for the release of their clients by 10:00 am on Saturday.

Read the full statement below.

FRN V Sowore & Another: The Statement Of The SSS Is Totally Misleading.

On 6/11/19 the bailiff of the federal high court wanted to serve the reproduction warrants issued by the court on the Director-General of the State Security Service (SSS).

But the sss asked the Bailiff to call back at 10.00 am on 7/11/19. The bailiff did and was able to serve the reproduction warrants on the DG of the SSS.

Upon acknowledging the service of the reproduction warrants the sss assured the bailliff and 5 lawyers from the defence team that our clients would be released yesterday. But the sss decided not to release our clients to our lawyers who waited in vain in the agency’s headquarters for not less than 4 hours.

When Sowore said that he would not make a statement without first consulting with me the sss management called me on phone on 6/8/19.

Assuming the sss had wanted to release our clients since yesterday the management would have contacted me.

It is pertinent to point out that the meaning of reproduction warrant issued by a trial court is that the defendants be produced for the purpose of releasing them having met their bail conditions.

In the instant case, the Federal High Court did not order the sss to hand over Messrs Sowore and Bakare to any person but to produce them for the purpose of releasing them having met the suffocating bail conditions imposed on them by the trial court.

Even though the SSS disobeyed the order of the Honourable Justice Taiwo for the release of Mr Sowore on 24/9/19 it has turned round to announce its readiness to comply with the order of the Honourable Justice Ifeoma Ojukwu for the release of Sowore and Bakare from illegal custody.

While thanking the Nigerian people for demanding for unconditional compliance with the orders of the federal high court we have directed two lawyers from our law firm to contact the management of the SSS for the release of our clients at 10.00 am on 9/11/19.

Meanwhile, we appeal to Sowore to call off his hunger strike forthwith.

Femi Falana SAN


[UPDATE] DSS Yet To Release Sowore – Lawyer

Hours after lawyers were sent to the headquarters of the Department of State Services on Saturday, to receive Sowore, he is yet to be released.

A member of his legal team, Barrister Marshal Abubakar, who led a team of family members to the headquarters of the DSS to receive him, confirmed this to Channels Television.

Barrister Abubakar said after putting calls across to some high ranking DSS officials, they were told to wait, as the persons who could authorise Sowore’s release were unavailable.

DSS Receives Court Order, Says Nobody Has Come For Sowore

Convener of #RevolutionNow Protest, Mr Omoyele Sowore, at the Federal High Court in Abuja on September 30, 2019. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

 

The Department of State Services (DSS) says it has received a court order releasing the convener of #RevolutionNow protest, Mr Omoyele Sowore.

The Public Relations Officer of the Service, Dr Peter Afunanya, confirmed this in a statement forwarded to Channels Television on Friday.

He, however, said nobody has turned up at the Service’s office to take delivery of Sowore, adding that the decision to make the situation was important for the sake of accountability.

The DSS spokesman noted that the court has been properly briefed the development and the steps being taken by the Service to comply with its order.

He stated that the DSS would never obstruct justice or disobey court orders but would rather do the needful as soon as the appropriate processes have been concluded.

The statement came hours after human rights lawyer and Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr Femi Falana, vowed to return to court over the continued detention of Mr Sowore by the DSS.

He described the action of the Service as utter contempt of court and pledged to seek legal measures against the agency to force it to comply with the bail order.

Mr Sowore and his co-defendant, Mr Olawale Bakare, who are standing trial for alleged treasonable felony, have yet to regain their freedom from the DSS custody since a Federal High Court in Abuja ordered their release on Wednesday.

Read the full statement below:

The Department of State Services (DSS) wishes to confirm that it has received the Court Order for the release of Omoyele Sowore.

It is important that the public notes that since the receipt of the Order, no person has turned up at the DSS to take delivery of him.

This becomes imperative for reasons of accountability.

However, the Court has been properly briefed on this development and the steps being taken to ensure compliance with its Order.

The Service, under the leadership of Yusuf Magaji Bichi (fwc), as the Director-General, is not a lawless organization and will never obstruct justice or disobey Court Orders.

It, therefore, affirms that it will do all that is needful once the appropriate processes have been concluded.

Peter Afunanya, Ph.D

Public Relations Officer,

Department of State Services,

National Headquarters,

Abuja

8th November 2019​

Sowore’s Bail: Counsels Confirm Service Of Release Order On DSS

Convener of #RevolutionNow Protest, Mr Omoyele Sowore, at the Federal High Court in Abuja on September 30, 2019. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

 

A team of lawyers representing Mr Omoyele Sowore in court say they have served the order of the court on the Department of State Services (DSS) to release their client.

One of the counsels to Sowore, Mr Inibehe Effiong, confirmed this to Channels Television on Thursday in Abuja.

Effiong who shared copies of the documents, however, insisted that the service has yet to comply with the order of the court.


RELATED
DSS Denies Refusing To Release Sowore
Sowore’s Trial: My Clients Have Fulfilled Bail Conditions, Will Be Freed Soon – Falana



Sowore, the convener of #RevolutionNow protest, and his co-defendant, Mr Olawale Bakare, have since been granted bail by the Federal High Court in Abuja.

The defendants were arraigned by the Federal Government on September 30 before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu on seven counts bordering on alleged conspiracy to commit treason and money laundering among other charges but they pleaded not guilty to all the counts.

Upon listening to the submissions of the prosecuting and defence counsels, the trial judge had granted bail to Sowore and Bakare in a total sum of N150 million and with some conditions that must be met.

The court had also adjourned the trial of both men until December 5 and 6 while a Senior Advocate of Nigeria and human rights lawyer, who is among the defence team, noted that his clients have met the bail conditions.

He, however, decried that the DSS has continually denied the lawyers access to the defendants.

In its reaction, the Service denied the claims that it has refused to comply with court order granting bail to the defendants.

Alleged Treason: DSS Denies Refusing To Release Sowore

The Department of State Services (DSS) on Thursday denied reports that it has refused to comply with court order granting bail to the convener of #revolutionnow protest, Omoyele Sowore.

Sowore is standing trial for alleged treasonable felony.

The Spokesperson of the DSS, Peter Afunaya told Channels Television that the Service was yet to be informed that Sowore had perfected his bail conditions as stipulated by the court.

READ ALSO: Sowore’s Trial: My Clients Have Fulfilled Bail Conditions, Will Be Freed Soon – Falana

Despite meeting their bail conditions, Sowore, and his co-defendant, Olawale Bakare, are still in the custody of the DSS after Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu of the Federal High Court Abuja had ordered their release on Wednesday, November 6.

The counsel to Sowore, Mr Femi Falana, told Channels Television on Wednesday that his clients have met the bail conditions imposed on them with regards to the charges of treasonable felony preferred against them by the Federal Government

He added that lawyers from his team and court bailiffs would go to the DSS office on Thursday morning to effect the release of his clients.

Meanwhile, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu has adjourned the trial of Sowore to the 5th and 6th of December, 2019.

The adjournment is occasioned by the objections raised by Counsel to Sowore, Mr Femi Falana to the effect that the defense team was never served with the witness statement that the prosecution is relying on to proceed with the trial.

The human rights advocate insists that there is a deliberate attempt on the part of the prosecution to ambush the defense team.

#RevolutionNow: Court Varies Sowore’s Bail Condition

 

The Federal High Court sitting in Abuja has varied the bail conditions for the convener of the #RevolutionNow protest, Omoyele Sowore, and his co-defendant, Mr Olawale Bakare.

Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu who delivered a ruling on a motion filed by their counsel, Mr Femi Falana on their behalf, explained that she was persuaded to vary the bail conditions only as far as it concerns the deposit of the fifty million bail security by one of the sureties for mister Sowore in her bail order three weeks ago.

She also ruled that all other bail conditions remain the same, while the bail bond for Mr Olawale Bakare would be reduced from N50 million to N20 million.

Thereafter, the case was adjourned to November 6 and 7.

Justice Ojukwu had on October 4 granted bail to Mr Sowore to the tune of N100 million and two sureties in like sum.

Other conditions included that he must deposit his travel documents and also not leave Abuja without the court’s permission during the pendency of his case.

Read Also: Court Grants Sowore, Bakare N150m Bail

At the commencement of the hearing on Monday, his counsel, Mr Falana, informed the court of the motion seeking a variation of the bail conditions.

He noted that the motion is being supported by a four-paragraph affidavit, a written address and an exhibit which is the ruling of the court granting bail.

He further stated that the application is to pray the court to vary the conditions for the bail of his client with respect to a condition which requires one of the sureties to deposit 50 million.

He referred the court to the case of Colonel Dasuki where the court imposed the same conditions and the appeal court ruled that the condition was excessive.

According to him, the appeal court held that in a situation where bail can be granted, it should not be unworkable, unbearable and difficult to meet.

He also referred to the ruling of Justice Taiwo Taiwo where the court asked that he is released to Mr Falana, and his passport is deposited, adding that that order has not been set aside.

According to him, the prosecution had disobeyed this order without any explanation.

With respect to the order restricting him to Abuja, Falana said Sowore has no house in Abuja but has one in Lagos.

He added that there is no counter-affidavit challenging the claim of the applicant.

Mr Falana said the court had granted bail 17 days ago and all efforts to meet it have failed because of the stringency of the conditions.

He added that the applicant teaches at a college of visual arts in the United States and is also a journalist who needs to earn a living during the pendency of the case.

He also referred the court to the case of Mr Jones Abiri where the court reviewed the bail conditions to enable him meet bail.

According to him, the applicant in that case was facing a capital offence and the court still varied it.

Responding to the arguments, the prosecutor Mr Hassan Liman said the application has no affidavit as the facts on the affidavit are information extracted from the applicant and not the person who deposed to the affidavit.

He argued that the deponent is Akin Sowore who was never at the facility of the State Security Service.

Mr Liman further stated that the affidavit in the further motion was deposed by one Marshal Abubakar who said he was at the facility of the DSS.

He added that having shown the court that the deponents of the affidavit did not go to the DSS facility, the motion was not valid because there was no affidavit backing it.

He, therefore asked that the application be dismissed for having no valid affidavit.

The prosecutor also noted that the evidence attached was not sufficient to prove that he is a teacher in the United States.

Furthermore, he stated that assuming the court agrees that the motion is valid, the court should in the alternative hold that the cases cited by the applicant are inapplicable in this case.

According to him, this is a different case because the applicant has not even met the bail conditions

He also told the court that having chanted revolution after the hearing if his case on the day of arraignment such a person should not be allowed to address the media or partake on any rally.

On the issue that he was granted bail by Justice Taiwo Taiwo, Mr Liman said that the case at that time was on whether or not the defendant can remain in the custody of the DSS and that order was made before arraignment.

Liman maintained that Sowore was arraigned on the 30th of September and later granted bail, but the bail has now been overtaken by events.

According to him, what the court needs to decide on now, is whether or not the applicant has satisfied the condition to merit a variation in bail conditions.

Responding on points of law, Mr Falana said Section 45 deals with national security and there is nothing in this case that has a bearing on national security.

He maintained that using the word ‘Revolution’ as stated by the prosecution, has nothing to do with national security as even the president has used the word in the past and it is in the record of court.

After listening to the arguments, the trial judge gave the order.

#RevolutionNow: Court Commences Hearing Of Sowore’s Motion On Bail Conditions

When A Country Is Rotten, You Cannot Fix It By Going To The Local Govt – Sowore
A file photo of Mr Omoyele Sowore.

 

The hearing in a motion filed by the convener of the #RevolutionNow protests, Omoyele Sowore, seeking a variation in his bail conditions has commenced.

Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu had on October 4 granted bail to Mr Sowore to the tune of N100 million and two sureties in like sum.

Other conditions included that he must deposit his travel documents and also not leave Abuja without the court’s permission during the pendency of his case.

Read Also: Court Grants Sowore, Bakare N150m Bail

At the commencement of the hearing on Monday, his counsel, Mr Femi Falana, informed the court of the motion seeking a variation of the bail conditions.

He noted that the motion is being supported by a four-paragraph affidavit, a written address and an exhibit which is the ruling of the court granting bail.

He further stated that the application is to pray the court to vary the conditions for the bail of his client with respect to a condition which requires one of the sureties to deposit 50 million.

He referred the court to the case of Colonel Dasuki where the court imposed the same conditions and the appeal court ruled that the condition was excessive.

According to him, the appeal court held that in a situation where bail can be granted, it should not be unworkable, unbearable and difficult to meet.

He also referred to the ruling of Justice Taiwo Taiwo where the court asked that he is released to Mr Falana, and his passport is deposited, adding that that order has not been set aside.

According to him, the prosecution has disobeyed this order without any explanation.

With respect to the order restricting him to Abuja, Falana said Sowore has no house in Abuja but has one in Lagos.

He added that there is no counter-affidavit challenging the claim of the applicant.

Mr Falana said the court had granted bail 17 days ago and all efforts to meet it have failed because of the stringency of the conditions.

He added that the applicant teaches at a college of visual arts in the United States and is also a journalist who needs to earn a living during the pendency of the case.

He also referred the court to the case of Mr Jones Abiri where the court reviewed the bail conditions to enable him meet bail.

According to him, the applicant in that case was facing a capital offence and the court still varied it.

Responding to the arguments, the prosecutor Mr Hassan Liman said the application has no affidavit as the facts on the affidavit are information extracted from the applicant and not the person who deposed to the affidavit.

He argued that the deponent is Akin Sowore who was never at the facility of the State Security Service.

Mr Liman further stated that the affidavit in the further motion was deposed by one Marshal Abubakar who said he was at the facility of the DSS.

He added that having shown the court that the deponents of the affidavit did not go to the DSS facility, the motion was not valid because there was no affidavit backing it.

He, therefore asked that the application be dismissed for having no valid affidavit.

The prosecutor also noted that the evidence attached was not sufficient to prove that he is a teacher in the United States.

Furthermore, he stated that assuming the court agrees that the motion is valid, the court should in the alternative hold that the cases cited by the applicant are inapplicable in this case.

According to him, this is a different case because the applicant has not even met the bail conditions

He also told the court that having chanted revolution after the hearing if his case on the day of arraignment such a person should not be allowed to address the media or partake on any rally.

On the issue that he was granted bail by Justice Taiwo Taiwo, Mr Liman said that the case at that time was on whether or not the defendant can remain in the custody of the DSS and that order was made before arraignment.

Liman maintained that Sowore was arraigned on the 30th of September and later granted bail, but the bail has now been overtaken by events.

According to him, what the court needs to decide on now, is whether or not the applicant has satisfied the condition to merit a variation in bail conditions.

Responding on points of law, Mr Falana said Section 45 deals with national security and there is nothing in this case that has a bearing on national security.

He maintained that using the word ‘Revolution’ as stated by the prosecution, has nothing to do with national security as even the president has used the word in the past and it is in the record of court.

After listening to the arguments, the trial judge varied the bail conditions as far as it concerns the payment of N50 million bail security.

She reduced the bail bond for Mr Olawale Bakare to N20 million and one surety in like sum.

The trial judge, however, said that all other aspects of the bail conditions which include that the defendants must not speak to the media and must remain in Abuja, still stand.

She also maintained the bail sum for Mr Sowore which was put at N100 million with two sureties in like sum.

The case was, thereafter, adjourned to November 6 and 7.

Sowore: SERAP Writes CJN, Calls For Respect For Citizens’ Rights

 

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), has written to the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, asking him to urgently develop measures to stop state and federal governments from using “the court as a tool to suppress citizens’ human rights”.

The letter dated October 4, 2019, and signed by the SERAP Deputy Director Kolawole Oluwadare, was in reaction to the ongoing trial of the convener of the #RevolutionNow protest, Omoyele Sowore.

According to SERAP, the NJC should ensure that when the authorities disobey court orders and suppress human rights, they are not allowed to come to the court and seek reliefs until they purge their contempt. Otherwise, “the justice system and the Nigerian constitution become a solemn mockery”.

Read the full statement below.

Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), has sent an open letter to Justice Ibrahim Tanko Muhammad, Chief Justice of Nigeria and Chairman, National Judicial Council (NJC), urging him to use his offices and leadership of the NJC to “urgently develop measures and issue directives to all courts to respond to the disturbing trends by state governments and Federal Government to use the court as a tool to suppress citizens’ human rights.”

SERAP said: “Across the country, state governors and federal government are charging citizens, mostly journalists, bloggers and activists, with serious crimes such as ‘treason’, ‘treasonable felony’ or bogus crime of ‘insulting public officials’, simply for exercising their human rights.”

In the letter dated 4 October 2019 and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organization said: “These charges, refusal of bail and granting of bail on stringent conditions seem to be dangerous manipulation of judicial authority and functions by high-ranking politicians, something which the NJC and the judiciary under your watch should resist.”

SERAP also said: “In the climate of a growing clampdown on human rights of journalists and activists by several state governments and federal government, the NJC ought to push back and act as protector of individuals’ rights against abuses by the authorities.

We believe that the courts, not the state government or federal government, should have the final say in matters of citizens’ human rights.”

According to the organization, “The NJC should ensure that when the authorities disobey court orders and suppress human rights, they are not allowed to come to the court and seek reliefs until they purge their contempt.


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VIDEO: ‘They Committed No Offence,’ Falana Says As Court Fixes Date For Sowore, Bakare’s Trial


Otherwise, the justice system and the Nigerian constitution become a solemn mockery.”

The letter, copied to Mr. Diego GARCÍA-SAYÁN, UN Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, read in part: “If the practice by state governments and federal government is allowed to continue, the courts will be relegated to desuetude, and will lead to arbitrary and unrestricted power as well as further suppression of citizens’ human rights.”

“It is essential for the NJC to issue directives to all courts to promptly consider on the face of the papers filed by the authorities whether the charges brought against journalists, bloggers and activists are truly based on facts or fabricated to secure indefinite detention of citizens with judicial authority.”

“In several cases, journalists, bloggers and activists have either been denied bail, as it is the case with journalist Agba Jalingo, or granted bail with stringent conditions that implicitly violate human rights, as it is the case with journalist and activist Omoyele Sowore and Olawale Bakare.

In all of such cases, the alleged offences are not constitutionally and internationally recognizable.”

“It is important for the judiciary to exercise all the judicial power placed in its hands by the constitution with firm determination and to guard against encroachments on that power by either the state governments or the federal government.”

“Even during many years of military dictatorship when the constitution was suspended and with it, Nigerians’ fundamental rights, the judiciary was still able to play an important role in securing protection of individuals’ rights and rejecting any forms of executive rascality by drawing on a variety of sources, including the African Charter on Human and Peoples’ Rights.”

“The return of democracy in 1999 gave rise to a legitimate public expectation that the NJC and the judiciary would be more active and proactive in enforcing the fundamental rights of Nigerians and pushing back in cases of violations and abuses of those rights, for the sake of the Nigerian constitution of 1999 (as amended) and as a step forward for increased accountability and greater integrity in government.”

“Nigerians now have a high degree of scepticism about the ability of the authorities at the state and federal levels to protect their human rights. We urge you to ensure that the NJC and the judiciary consistently demonstrate their original and sacred functions of standing between government and the governed.”

“Charging citizens for crimes of treason and treasonable felony or ‘insult’ simply for exercising their human rights shows the authorities’ lack of commitment to protecting the human rights of all Nigerians, particularly those who perform critical roles and contribute to strengthening and sustaining the Nigerian democratic system.”

“No government should have the power to use the courts as a tool of overriding the rights of individuals. The NJC has a responsibility to ensure that the courts play a central role in enforcing fundamental rights, and ensuring that the authorities do not use the courts as a tool to charge citizens with crimes, which are not constitutionally and internationally recognizable, simply for exercising their human rights.”

“Democracy requires some protection of the weak from the strong. The NJC ought to push for courts’ activism in the area of human rights, especially at this time when the authorities are regularly clamping down on citizens’ human rights. This will enhance democracy, the rule of law, and will be entirely consistent with the constitutional role of the judiciary.”

“Human rights and constitutional principles are fundamental and it is the role of an independent judiciary to give effect to those rights and principles, within the rule of law.”

“We believe that the NJC can ensure that the courts are better protectors of human rights than the executive at state and federal levels can ever be. Indeed, Nigerians including journalists, bloggers and activists require protection from both the state governments and federal government.”

“We believe that it is only an independent and courageous judiciary that can ensure full respect for the human rights of those brought before the courts by the authorities.”

“Agba Jalingo, journalist and publisher of the online CrossRiverWatch, is charged with treason over a report about an alleged diversion of N500 million by the Cross River governor, Ben Ayade.

According to our information, a Federal High Court sitting in Calabar, Cross River State, and presided over by Justice Simon Amobeda on October 4 2019 denied him bail. He was handcuffed to another inmate when he appeared in court.”

“Similarly, journalist and activist Omoyele Sowore and Olawale Bakare are facing trial on seven counts of treasonable felony, fraud, cyber-stalking and insulting President Muhammadu Buhari, simply for exercising their human rights.”

“Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu granted Sowore and Bakare bail but imposed stringent conditions that implicitly violate their constitutional rights to personal liberty, presumption of innocence, freedom of movement and freedom of expression.”

“We hope that the aspects highlighted will help guide your action by ensuring that the NJC is able to urgently respond to the threats to judicial independence and authority highlighted above. We would be happy to provide further information or to discuss any of these issues in more detail with you.”

Kolawole Oluwadare
SERAP Deputy Director
6/10/2019
Lagos, Nigeria

Court Grants Sowore, Bakare N150m Bail

 

A Federal High Court in Abuja has granted bail to the convener of #RevolutionNow protest, Mr Omoyele Sowore, and his co-defendant, Mr Olawale Bakare.

The trial judge, Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu, gave the order on Friday while ruling on the bail application filed by the two defendants.

Sowore and Bakare were arraigned by the Federal Government on Monday before the judge on seven counts bordering on alleged conspiracy to commit treason and money laundering among other charges.

After listening to arguments from the prosecutor and the defendants’ counsel, Justice Ojukwu adjourned proceedings to rule on the bail application by Sowore and Bakare.

At the resumed sitting on Friday, counsel to the duo, Mr Femi Falana, urged the court to grant bail to his clients but the prosecutor, Mr Hassan Liman, objected to the request.

Upon listening to the submissions of the two layers, the trial judge noted that the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) was clear as to when someone charged with treason can be granted bail.

She, therefore, granted bail to the two defendants in a total sum of N150 million.

“Since the charge before the court does not carry any death penalty, I am inclined to grant bail,” Justice Ojukwu held.

She granted bail to Sowore, the first defendant, in the sum of N100 million and two sureties in like sum.

The judge said the sureties must swear to an affidavit means of over N50 million and sho0w evidence of tax payment.

She added that the first defendant must deposit his travel documents with the court and prohibited him from holding any public rally and must stay within the jurisdiction of Abuja.

Similarly, Justice Ojukwu granted bail to Bakare, the second defendant, in the sum of N50 million and a surety in like sum.

She also held that he must deposit his travel documents with the court and stay within Abuja.

The second defendant was also ordered not to hold any rally and must not disobey any part of the bail conditions like that of the first defendant.

Where there is a violation of the bail conditions, the judge threatened that the court would not fail to revoke the bail.

VIDEO: ‘We Will Survive This, I Am Not Afraid,’ Sowore Says In Court

Mr Omoyele Sowore speaks in a courtroom at the Federal High Court in Abuja on October 4, 2019.

 

 

The convener of #RevolutionNow protest, Mr Omoyele Sowore, has asked his supporters to remain resolute and not give up on what he termed “a brand new Nigeria”.

He made the call on Friday during his appearance at the Federal High Court in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

In this short video recorded earlier before the trial judge granted him and his co-defendant, Mr Olawale Bakare bail, a crowd of supporters surrounded Sowore in the courtroom, accusing security operatives of intimidating him.

READ ALSO: Court Grants Sowore, Bakare N150m Bail

A hot argument ensued as Sowore, who was visibly angry said, “Nobody can harass me. Under the military, we survived it; we will survive this one too.”

“It doesn’t matter how long it takes, we must persevere and ensure that we liberate ourselves. We must not give up.

“I am in high spirit, I am not afraid, I don’t care what they do. We need a brand new country, that’s what I’m about,” he added.

Sowore and Bakare were arraigned on Monday by the Federal Government on seven charges before Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu.

The charges filed against Sowore and Bakare by the government are alleged conspiracy to commit treason and money laundering among others.

Both men have been granted bail in the sum of N150 million.

The court, however, gave them some conditions, including depositing their travel documents and their movement restricted to Abuja.

Watch the video below:

VIDEO: ‘They Committed No Offence,’ Falana Says As Court Fixes Date For Sowore, Bakare’s Trial

Omoyele Sowore                                Olawale Bakare                                       Femi Falana

 

 

Human rights activist and Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Mr Femi Falana, has insisted that Mr Omoyele Sowore and Mr Olawale Bakare have committed no offence.

He stated this on Friday while addressing journalists at the premises of the Federal High Court in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

Responding to a question from Channels Television reporter about the preparedness of his clients for trial, the senior advocate said, “For sure, because they committed no offence.”

Sowore, the convener of #RevolutionNow protest, was brought to the court along with Bakare by officials of the Department of State Services (DSS).

READ ALSOCourt Grants Sowore, Bakare N150m Bail


Nobody Is Above The Law

Both men are facing seven counts bordering on alleged conspiracy to commit treason and money laundering among other charges filed against them by the Nigerian Government.

They, however, pleaded not guilty to all the charges when they were arraigned on Monday while Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu ordered their remand in DSS custody.

Four days later, Justice Ojukwu granted the bail application of the defendants, but not without stringent conditions.

In his reaction, Mr Falana said they would ensure they do their best to meet all the conditions for his clients to regain their freedom.

He said, “We are going to explore the possibility of meeting the bail conditions and if we are unable, there are other options which we will explore under the law.

“There is nobody who is above the law in the country; we will take appropriate steps to ensure that our clients regain their freedom as soon as possible.”

On his part, the prosecutor Mr Hassan Liman believes the government is on the right path with plans to speedily prosecute the defendants.

“We are waiting to see to the fulfilment of the bail condition,” he said, adding “The court has granted accelerated hearing.”

The court has fixed the trial of Sowore and Bakare for November 6, 7, and 8, 2019.

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