Court rejects bail for murder suspects

Acheme Jack, Kano

A Chief Magistrate court sitting in Kano State, northern Nigeria has turned down bail request for the five suspects accused of murdering a 74-year-old trader, Mrs. Bridget Agbahime.

The five accused persons murdered the female trader at Kofar Wambai market on June 2, 2016 on the claim of blasphemy against Prophet Mohammed.

When the case came up for hearing, Counsel for the defendants, Barrister Gambo Abdulsalam argued that the court had jurisdiction to entertain the case on the grounds of determining the murder case against the five accused persons,

After citing numerous cases to buttress his argument, Barrister Abdulsalam “pleaded with the court to release the five accused persons on bail.”

‘No sentiment’
He argued further that in making judicial decision, sentiments have no place in court, stressing that it is a matter of hard facts and law.

In his response, the Police Counsel to the plaintiff, Barrister Ekwe Sunday vehemently opposed the bail application of the Defence Counsel, arguing that the case is an established capital offence, which investigation has already been completed, hence the arraignment of the accused persons in court.

Also, Barrister Sunday argued that the accused persons should not be granted bail, because it is not only capital in nature but a grievous offence in the face of the law and the public.

“This is a homicide case as such it is a serious offence that deserved capital punishment, hence the accused having no right to sought for bail.”

He told the court that the file has been submitted to the State Attorney General, for further report, while the Police is still continuing investigation on how to arrest other accused persons who were said to be at large.

All the accused persons, Ahmed Dauda, Abdullahi Mustapha, Zubairu Abubakar, Abdullahi Abubakar and Musa Abdulllahi were present in court, while the arguments lasted.

After hearing the arguments of counsels for both the defendant and the accused, Chief Magistrate Mohammed Jibrin, turned down the bail application, therefore adjourned hearing to July 20, 2016, while the accused persons were remanded in prison custody.

The Nigerian President Mohammed Buhari and the Kano State Governor, Umar Ganduje did condemn the attack.