Bashir Turawa reports
Police in Kwara State have re-arraigned an Ilorin cleric, Shafihi Abdulrahman, popularly known as Ero Llalijannah, and two others, Sodiq Shehu and Ambali Abdulfatahi, before Magistrate S.O Sambo of the Magistrate court sitting in Ilorin, the Kwara state capital on Monday.
The trio were arraigned for the alleged offences of criminal conspiracy, assault with intent to outrage modesty and unlawful confinement.
Recall that the trio were earlier arraigned before Magistrate M.S Lawal on 6th, July, 2020 but the case was later transferred to Magistrate S.O Sambo, following an application of transfer written to the Deputy Registrar of Magistrate courts by the counsels to the nominal complainant.
“We wish to state categorically that as Counsel to the Nominal Complainant, who also watched brief, the Nominal Complainant informed us that she is not comfortable with the way and manner the Magistrate M.S. Lawal conducted the proceeding of 6th July, 2020 wherein, the Defendants were released on bail while the Nominal Complainant was confined by the Court based on the Court’s believe that due to the nature of the Nominal Complainant’s case, she should be screened from all members of the Public including her own Counsel,” the letter read in part.
FIR submitted to the court by the police revealed that on 30th of March, 2020, Medinah Shehu of 13, Dilali compound, Dada street, Alawonla Area, Ilorin alleged that “her father, Sodiq Shehu had been beating her and giving her series of torture because she believes in wearing hijab and that no one is to be bowed before except God. The father conspired with one Abdulrahman Shafihi popularly known as Ero Lalijannah who took her forcefully to his house where she was beaten mercilessly and unlawfully detained for three days.
“She alleged further that the said Abdulrahman Shafihi, aka Ero Lalijannah went ahead to dump her with one Ambali Abdulfatahi, ‘m’, who abducted, assaulted and impregnated her with the consent of her father, Sodiq Shehu.”
Police investigation revealed that Sodiq Shehu and Shafihi Abdulrahman both conspired to maltreat the nominal complainant and forced her to marry one Ambali Abdulfatahi who forced and compelled her to travel to an unknown place where he later impregnated her.
Further investigation by the police revealed that the trio have committed the offences levied against them.
The offences are in contravention of sections 97, 268 and 257 of the penal code law.
However, the trio pleaded not guilty to the allegations.
Police prosecutor, Inspector Isaac said police investigation is still ongoing, and prayed the court to adjourn the case to a later date in order to enable police conclude its investigations.
He further prayed the court not to grant the defendants bail in order to prevent frustration of police investigation.
On the contrary, the lead counsel to the defendants, Dr Folorunsho Ahmad Hussain prayed the court to grant the defendants bail, citing different reasons.
According to him, “the defendants have never abused the privilege of administrative bail given to them by the police.”
He further said the FIR by the police is based on mere assertions which needs substantive evidence, and also in line with constitutional presumption of innocence.
The Magistrate granted bail to the defendants with the same terms and conditions of the previous court.
She adjourned the case till 17th of August, 2020 for further mention.