By Ikechukwu Nnochiri
ABUJA—An Abuja High Court sitting at Jabi, yesterday struck out a fresh bail request by Maryam Sanda, remanded in prison custody for allegedly stabbing her husband; the son of former Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Bilyamin Bello to death.
The alleged ‘killer wife’ had through her lawyer, Mr. Joseph Daudu, SAN, informed the court among others, that she was already pregnant as at the time she was docked and remanded in prison for murder.
Daudu urged the court to take pity on his client who he said would require proper medical attention at this early stage of her about three months old pregnancy.
However, the prosecuting counsel, Mr. James Idachaba, opposed Maryam’s bail request, insisting there was insufficient evidence before the court to prove that the defendant was indeed pregnant.
In his ruling on the matter, trial Justice Yusuf Halilu held that the fresh bail application amounted to an abuse of court process since the defendant had gone before the Court of Appeal to challenge a previous ruling that refused her bail.
Justice Halilu noted that the defendant did not withdraw her pending notice of appeal before re-approaching the trial court to grant her the same relief.
The judge held that it would amount to toeing “a path of destruction” to decide the new application on its merit when an appeal bordering on the same subject matter was still pending before the appellate court.
The court said it was not in any way swayed by passionate plea and argument that was made on behalf of the defendant by her lawyer.
“The application is liable to be struck out and it is accordingly struck out”, Justice Halilu held.
Meanwhile, the matter was subsequently adjourned till March 19 to enable the prosecution to respond to the motion challenging the competence of the charge and the court’s jurisdiction to commence full trial of the defendants.
The prosecution had before the case was adjourned, notified the court that four witnesses were on ground to testify and give evidence in the trial.
It will be recalled that the court had on Decemeber 14, 2017, also rejected plea for the defendant who is nursing a six-month old baby girl, to be released from Suleja prison on bail.
Maryam was remanded in prison custody on November 24, 2017, after she was arraigned on a two-count charge of culpable homicide punishable by death under section 221 of the Penal Code Law.