The Federal High Court in Abuja yesterday admitted to bail 12 persons arrested at the residence of Yoruba Nation agitator, Sunday Adeyemo, popularly known as Sunday Igboho. Justice Obiora Egwuatu admitted the applicants, said to be Igboho’s aides, to bail after he overruled the Department of State Services (DSS), which opposed the release of four out of the 12 persons that have been on detention since July 1.
The DSS had claimed that its investigations revealed that Igboho-Habitat Babatunde, Abideen Shittu, Jamiu Oyetunji and Bamidele Sunday were deeply involved in stockpiling firearms and should not be granted bail. It however did not oppose the release of Abdullateef Onaolapo, Tajudeen Irinloye, Diekola Ademola, Ayobami Donald, Uthman Adelabu, Olakunle Oluwapelumi, Raji Kazeem and Taiwo Tajudeen, saying they had minimal involvement in Igboho’s alleged criminal activities.
In his ruling, Justice Egwuatu held that the constitution empowered the court to exercise its discretionary powers to grant the applicants bail While he granted bail to the four objected to by the DSS in the sum of N10 million, with two sureties each, he pegged the bail bond for the rest eight at N5 million. The court held that the sureties must be resident in Abuja, adding that one of them must be a civil servant not below grade level 12.
It held that the civil servant must submit a letter of employment and last promotion letter, as well as tender a passport photograph. All the sureties were directed to submit an evidence of payment of tax for the past three years and also depose to an affidavit of means. The court directed the four applicants, whose bail request the DSS opposed, to report to the office of the agency every first Monday of the month, for three months effective September 1. Meanwhile, the court declined an application for all the applicants to be transferred to a correctional centre pending the perfection of their bail conditions.