By Onozure Dania
Lagos—A 67-year-old man, Shamsideen Adebimpe, who allegedly threatened to burn down the palace of the Oni Isheri of Isheri Olofin in Alimosho Local Government Area, Lagos, Oba Wahab Ayinde Balogun, has been charged before an Igbosere Magistrate’s Court.
Adebimpe, who resides at Adebimpe Avenue, Old Isheri Olofin, is standing trial on a six-count charge bordering on conspiracy, breach of peace, arson threat and contempt of court preferred against him by the Police.
It was reported that trouble started after a Lagos High Court judgment on a land dispute was won by the monarch, after 32 years of litigation.
The prosecutor, Inspector Stephen Molo, told the court that Adebimpe and others, who are still at large, committed the alleged offences between June 2012 and September 2017, at Isheri Olofin.
Molo said the defendant and his accomplices acted in a manner likely to cause breach of the peace in the area.
He said they “mobilised hoodlums to sing inciting songs and rained abuses on His Royal Majesty, Oba Wahab Ayinde Balogun.
“They caused to be published and circulated, publications in newspapers and leaflets which were likely to provoke and bring disaffection on the residents of Isheri Olofin Kingdom.”
The prosecutor also told the court that the publications were also likely to cause fear and alarm in Isheri Olofin.
“On the same date and place, with intent to intimidate and annoy Oba Balogun, his family members and subjects, the defendant threatened to burn down his palace,” Molo added.
According to him, Adebimpe, “without lawful excuse, disobeyed the lawful judgment of Hon Justice L. B. Lawal-Akapo delivered on May 15, 2012 by trespassing and illegally selling the land of Isheri Olofin Kingdom.”
The alleged offences committed are contrary to and punishable under sections 39(1), 56(1), 57(1) (b), 104(1) (h) (i), 168(1) (d), 412 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
Adebimpe, who was docked before Chief Magistrate O. O. Oshin, pleaded not guilty to the charges.
His counsel, Mrs P. Nwanna, applied for his bail on liberal terms, adding “most of the counts are just a ploy to throw the defendant in jail.”
However, Molo objected to her application for the defendant’s bail, saying “the defendant has been on the run for a long time. He committed some of those acts from hiding.
“If he is granted bail on liberal terms, he will never appear in court. The Police had to track him through phone calls. He poses a serious threat.”
Magistrate Oshin granted Adebimpe N500,000 bail with two sureties in like sum.
She said one of the sureties must be a Level 15 civil servant in Lagos State, while the other must be self-employed and provide evidence of his business as well as a six-month bank statement.
The case was adjourned till March 12 for a mention.