By Wahab Abdullah
LAGOS â€” FORMER Chairman of the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, Chief Bode George and five other former members of the board of the authority who were convicted, Monday, by an Ikeja High Court, yesterday filed their notice of appeals challenging their convictions.
Others who were jailed alongside Chief Bode George include former Managing Director of the NPA, Architect Aminu Dabo, Captain Olusegun Abidoye, Alhaji Abdulahi Aminu Tafida, Alhaji Zanna Maideribe and Alhaji Sule Aliyu.
The appeal processes which were filed at the registry of the Ikeja High Court, by their counsel include notice of appeal and a motion asking the court to grant them temporary bail, pending the determination of the appeal.
The counsel however kept the court processes close to their chest refusing to oblige newsmen with copies. The lawyers claimed that journalists were unduly sensational in their report of the convictions.
The lawyers who arrived the court premises and concluded their filings at about 4.00pm, noted that newsmen reported that the convicts were sentenced to 28 years imprisonment, a report which they claimed was done in bad taste.
They insisted that journalists should have limited their reports to two-and-a-half years, which the court pronounced on each count.
One of the lawyers wondered where the journalists got their reports. He however argued that they have to serve the respondents copies before allowing newsmen have access to the processes.
When leaving the court, the counsel agreed to a meeting at the chambers of the lead counsel to the defendant, Chief Tunji Ayanlaja, SAN, for subsequent action on the matter. They ignored journalistsâ€™ requests to know the grounds of their appeal.
More visitors to the Kirikiri Maximum Prison were stopped from seeing the convicts yesterday. Among the vistors were his political associates, family members and other hangers-on who bemoaned the fate that has befallen the former political gladiator.