Justice Adeyemi Fasanmi of the Ondo State High Court has rejected a request by a lawyer, Steve Adebowale, to bar journalists from covering the trial of two government officials alleged to have stolen a baby delivered by a mentally challenged woman, Deborah Iretioluwa Olorundare.
The government officials, Sarumi Adeyemi and Orisamehin Florence Bosede of the state Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development were arraigned on two-count charge of conspiracy to commit felony and child stealing.
Adebowale, who is Counsel to Sarumi had informed Justice Fasanmi that the defendants were subject to the scandal by the press, alleging that they have been found culpable of the crime.
He queried why journalists brought cameras to cover the proceedings and asked the Judge if journalists had taken permission from the court.
He said, “The press cannot constitute itself to an alternative court. The defendants have been embarrassed.”
But in reply, Justice Fasanmi said journalists do not need permission to be present at any court proceeding.
Fasanmi noted that even at the Supreme Court, there are seats reserved for journalists known as ‘press gallery.’
He said that “This is a case that will deserve public attention. You cannot bar the press from the court.
“If any press maligns your client, you can sue them. I cannot stop the press from coming to court.
“I don’t have to know if the press is here. The court does not work on speculation. You have not directed my attention to any adverse publication on this case.”
However, the defendants however pleaded not guilty when the charges were read to them.
The Prosecuting Counsel, Bunmi Koyenikan, informed the court that three witnesses were present in court.
Koyenikan added that items requested by the defence Counsel are with him in court.
The Defence Counsel had requested for the report of the police and DSS that indicated prima facie case against the defendants, a list of documents and materials intended to be relied upon against the defendants and a statement of each and every witness which the prosecution intended to call or rely upon against the defendants.
Justice Fasanmi however granted the defendants bail to the sum of N1m and one surety in like sum who must be a civil servant from level the rank of level 13.
The trial judge gave the defendants one week to perfect their bail conditions and adjourned the case to January 18, 2022, for commencement of trial.
Counsel to Bosede, Victor Olatoyegun, pleaded with journalists not “to prejudge the defendants.
Olatoyegun said they should “present issues as they were without giving the impression that the defendants have been found guilty.
Recall that the prosecution had told the court that the mother of the child gave birth to the child on a street.
Koyenikan told the court that a Good Samaritans took the newly born baby to an orphanage in Ondo while the mother was taken to the State psychiatric hospital by officials of the Women Affairs Ministry who were contacted by the Good Samaritan.
The mother recovered from her insanity after four months and repeatedly demanded her child.
After her recovery and eventual discharge from the facility, the suspects had no option other than to present her with a baby due to pressure from family and the hospital.
A twist was introduced, when the mother rejected the imbecile baby boy brought to her and insisted that her baby was a girl.
The deal was exposed later and it was alleged that the original baby had been given to a couple desperately in need of a baby girl for adoption after payment of about a N1million.
Truck Driver’s Murder: Oyetola Tasks Police To Produce Killer Cop
Osun State Ggovernor Gboyega Oyetola, has asked the state Commissioner of Police, Wale Olokode to produce the killer police who shot a 33-year-old truck driver, Kabiru Babai in Osogbo on Friday.
Babai was shot dead by a notorious Police officer on Friday while he was fixing a company’s truck that broke down along Ikirun/Osogbo road, Ota-Efun area of Osogbo.
It was gathered that the deceased has a pregnant wife and a four-year-old child.
He was brutalized before he was shot dead in the chest at the Ota-Efun area Osogbo.
Babai’s colleague, Adam Ibrahim, 21, who was at the scene of the incident told DAILY POST that they were fixing the truck when four police officers in a mini commercial bus (Korope) dragged Babai from under the truck and started beating him.
Oyetola has now condemned the alleged killing of the unarmed truck driver by a policeman in a statement by his Press Secretary, Ismail Omipidan.
He called for the investigation of the circumstances leading to the event and charged the State Commissioner of Police to produce the alleged killer and make him face the full wrath of the law.
While commending the youths of the area for not taking the laws into their hands, Oyetola assured that Government would ensure justice is done.
He sympathised with the family of the deceased, his employers and friends, saying that as a government, “we are resolved to do everything possible to protect citizens from actual and potential threats.”
Primary School Teacher Gets Life Imprisonment For Defiling Five-year-old
The Jigawa State High Court sitting in Kazaure on Wednesday sentenced a primary school teacher, Makasusi Sunusi, to life imprisonment for defiling a 5-year-old pupil.
The prosecution counsel narrated that Sunusi, who was the victim’s teacher, lured the pupil and raped her in the school at Kazaure town on 4th February 2021.
He said the suspect was arrested and charged to court for the offence of rape punishable under the Jigawa State Penal Code Miscellaneous Amendment, 2014.
The prosecution presented five witnesses and tendered a medical report to prove its case.
Presiding Judge, Justice Hussaina Adamu Aliyu said the prosecution counsel had proved their case beyond reasonable doubt and therefore found the accused guilty of the offense.
She sentenced the defendant to life imprisonment for the offence of rape as prescribed by Section 3 of the Jigawa State Penal Code Miscellaneous Amendment, 2014.
Father, Grandfather Arrested For Allegedly Raping 13-yr-old Daughter
Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Osun Command, says it has arrested two persons, a father and a grandfather, for allegedly raping their 13-year-old daughter/granddaughter.
The command’s Spokesperson, Mr Adigun Daniel, who disclosed this in a statement issued in Osogbo on Monday, said that the suspects were arrested on Friday, upon the confession of the girl.
“The corps received a tip-off from an informant who disclosed that the girl opened up to her that the grandfather and father have been having canal knowledge of her.
“The corps immediately swung to action and arrested the father.
“Upon investigation, the girl said that her father had been canal knowledge of her since two years ago. She also said that she had been living with her maternal grandmother at the age of three before she was taken to her paternal grandfather at the age of five.
“She said that her father and mother are separated and that was why she was entrusted in the care of her grandparents at different times.
“The girl also stated that at some point, she was molested by her grandfather but she could not stick to her allegation, owing to the fact that she was still living with him,” the NSCDC spokesman said.
He, however, added that both the father and the grandfather had denied having canal knowledge of the girl.
Daniel said that the corps had given custody of the girl to the state Ministry of Women and Children Affairs, pending the conclusion of investigation on the matter.
He further stated that the NSCDC Commandant in the state, Mr Emmanuel Ocheja, had directed that appropriate investigation be carried out on the alleged case of incest against the victim.
The NSCDC spokesman quoted Ocheja as saying that the girl was psychologically disturbed to give a vivid account of her ordeal, adding, however, that with tact, the corps would scoop out useful information to help her.
Ocheja said that NSCDC would not condone such act in any guise, adding that the protection of underage and females was paramount to the corps.
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