Olanrewaju Omiyinka, alias Baba Ijesha, a Nollywood actor, has pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing a juvenile.
Baba Ijesha, who was wearing a white hooded jacket and a mask and was chained to another criminal suspect as he appeared before a Special Offenses and Domestic Violence Court in the Ikeja area of Lagos on Thursday,
He was charged with six counts of attempted sexual assault, sexual assault of a juvenile, and indecent treatment of a child by the State Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP). He, on the other hand, pleaded not guilty to all six charges.
Mrs Olayinka Adeyemi, the DPP, then told the trial judge, Justice Oluwatoyin Taiwo, to remand the defendant in custody awaiting the start of the trial.
The defence team, headed by Babatunde Ogala and Dada Awosika, two Senior Advocates of Nigeria, informed the court that they had submitted a bail application and had served it on the prosecution. Ogala particularly requested an audience with the judge to argue the bail motion. Mrs Adeyemi, the DPP, immediately objected to the motion, claiming that her staff has not to check the medical records that the defense wants to use to determine his bail.
Justice Taiwo granted the defense team’s motion in a brief judgment and urged the parties to debate the bail application.
Babatunde Ogala, the defendant’s lead counsel, reminded the court that the issue of bail is solely a matter of the defendant’s right as a citizen under Section 36 (5) of the Constitution. He requested that the court grant the defendant broad bail conditions.
The DPP disputed the claims by stating that bail is granted at the court’s sole discretion. She requested that the court take into account the seriousness of the crime and deny the bail request.
Justice Taiwo stood the case down to evaluate the bail application and write her decision.
By Fikayo Ajayi