A Magistrates’ Court sitting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, has granted bail to human rights’ activist, Omoyele Sowore.
A N20million bail in like sum with two sureties, one of whom must be a federal civil servant not below grade level 12 was granted to Sowore on Monday.
While ruling on the bail application filed by their lawyer, Marshal Abubakar, the Chief Magistrate, Mabel Segun-Bello, ruled that the sureties must reside in Abuja metropolis with landed properties and known addresses.
Also, the 2nd to 5th defendants were also admitted to bail in the sum of N1million and one surety in like sum.
Sowore is also expected to physically report to the registrar of Federal Capital Territory High Court every Monday and Friday pending the determination of the case against him. He Is not expected to travel outside Abuja and the country.
The judge has adjourned the matter to February 5, 2021, for trial.
Those arrested alongside Sowore are Peter Williams, Sanyaolu Juwon, Emmanuel Bulus and Damilare.
They were arrested and brutalised by armed policemen on crossover night, December 31, 2020, for organising a candlelight procession to celebrate New Year at Gudu junction in Abuja.
The activists were arraigned on Monday 4, 2021 on trumped-up charges for alleged criminal conspiracy, unlawful assembly, and inciting public disturbance.
The court ordered the activists to be remanded at Kuje Correctional Centre till Tuesday when the court will hear the bail application.
Sowore had complained to the court of inhuman treatment, that they were denied food and medical attention at the office of defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad at Guzape, popularly called Abattoir.
But upon their arrival at the court on Tuesday, the activists were handcuffed by the prison officials like criminals. They were also denied access to medical treatments, food, water and clothing, contrary to the order of court.
The situation compelled the presiding judge to order the activists to be kept remanded at the Force Criminal Investigation Department, Area 10.
She also ordered the police to give the defendants access to medical treatments, food, books, clothing and fresh air.
The chief magistrate also directed that Damilare Adenola, the third defendant, should be given access to Internet facilities under strict supervision to enable him to continue his online school programme.
The court had fixed Friday, January 8, 2021, for the ruling on the bail application, but the Nigerian government and police in an attempt to frustrate the process deliberately refused to bring the activists to court.
The police through the Deputy Inspector General In Charge of Force Criminal Investigation Department claimed to have received documents from the Office of Attorney General of Federation, directing them to transfer the case file to the Director of Public Prosecutions.
SaharaReporters, New York