A Wuse Magistrates’ Court, on Friday, admitted a public servant, Mrs Aisha Shettima, to bail in the sum N2 million bail for alleged forgery and land grabbing.
Magistrate Elizabeth Wonni, granted the bail application moved by Shettima’s counsel, Suleiman Yakubu, after the defendant took her plea.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Shettima (the 2nd defendant), is being charged alongside former Zonal Manager, Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), Lugard Edegbe (1st defendant), who had earlier been arraigned and granted bail.
However, following the appearance of Shettima in court on Friday, the police prosecutor, Peter Amadi, applied that the case be taken afresh in the interest of fair hearing.
After the first information report (FIR) was read to the defendants, they denied engaging in the offences brought against them.
Although Edegbe’s counsel was not in court, Shettima’s lawyer, Yakubu, applied that his client be admitted to bail on liberal terms, pending the hearing and determination of the matter in accordance with the provisions of the law.
“She (Shettima) has a reliable surety with fixed address. She is a public servant and has no criminal record.
“She is relying on your discretionary power to grant the application,” he said.
Amadi did not oppose the application.
The judge, who ruled that the earlier bail granted Edegbe should subsist, also granted Aisha’s plea for bail with two sureties who must be residents of FCT.
She ordered that the sureties must produce in court proof of payment of utility bills and their passport photographs.
“If the sureties are tenants, proof as to that shall be brought and if they are landlords, the proof of that shall be brought,” she ruled.
The magistrate, however, warned against jumping bail.
“The only time I have issues with defendant is when he fails to come to court.
“If a defendant did not come to court and his whereabout is not known, I will withdraw the bail and he will be coming from prison no matter whose ox is gored.
“So any time the case is coming up, make sure you are in court,” she warned.
The matter was adjourned until Jan. 29 for hearing.
NAN reports that a businessman, Muhammad Bature had, on Feb. 5 while giving his evidence as the star witness, accused Edegbe, of appropriating his land located at Sabon Lugbe area of Abuja.
Edegbe, a 59-year-old man, was said to have sold the plot of land measuring 2.7 hectares belonging to Bature to Aisha.
The Inspector-General of Police had received the petition on June 12, 2017, alleging that Edegbe and Aisha sometimes between 2009 and 2017 conspired and forged an offer of terms of grant of approval bearing the name Duruola Nig. Ltd. dated March 1998 in respect of a land, purportedly made by the zonal planning office of AMAC.
The FIR also alleged that Edegbe, being a public servant, knowingly framed an incorrect document in a manner that is likely to cause injury.(NAN)