By Bashir Bello – Katsina
Two different Magistrate courts sitting in Katsina state have on Tuesday granted bail to the proprietors of the sealed rehabilitation centres in Katsina and Daura local government areas respectively.
The owner of Niga Rehabilitation and Reformation Centre, Kofar Durbi quarters, Katsina, Mallam Salisu Hamisu, was granted bail to the sum of One Million naira while Mallam Bello Abdullahi, owner of the Daura rehabilitation centre was granted bail to the sum of One hundred thousand naira.
The proprietors, Hamisu and Abdullahi, were being prosecuted for allegedly running illegal centres and maltreatment of inmates in the state.
The presiding magistrate, who pleaded for the protection of identity for security reasons, granted bail to Hamisu in the sum of one million naira with three ‘reasonable and responsible sureties’, one of whom must be a Director in the civil service.
The Court also directed that “two of the sureties must have houses ‘within the jurisdiction of the court and must be well known while Hamisu was also directed to submit his international passport with the court”.
The police prosecutor, ASP Sani Ado had earlier told the court that investigation was still in progress on the case and pleaded for an adjournment of the case to a new date which the presiding magistrate granted and adjourned the case of Hamisu to 14th November, 2019 for mention.
Recall that Hamisu was charged with offences of “wrongful confinement and assault or criminal force in an attempt to wrongfully confine a person’’.
According to the police, the charges were under sections 257(b) and 270 of penal code law.
The cleric pleaded not guilty to all the charges when he was first brought to the court last Thursday.
Meanwhile, the presiding chief magistrate, Court One, Mallam Nuradeen Abdullahi granted bail to the 78-year-old cleric and owner of the Daura rehabilitation centre, Mallam Bello Abdullahi and two others of his accomplice, Habibu Bello, 28 and Abba Abubakar, 16.
The trios were arraigned on a three-count charge of criminal conspiracy, wrongful confinement and cruelty to children.
The police prosecutor, ASP Lawan Korau told the court that the accused were facing the charges under sections 97,257(b) and 238 of the penal code law.
The presiding Chief Magistrate, while ruling on the bail application, insisted that the 1999 constitution of Nigeria as amended, allowed for their bail.
He said “The 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, as amended allows for the bail of the accused. I don’t agree with the argument of the police prosecutor that if the accused were granted bail, it would jeopardise the investigation. I accordingly grant the three accused person bail”.
The Chief Magistrate admitted each of the accused persons to bail in the sum of one hundred thousand naira (N100,000.00) each.
He also directed that the trio should have one surety each who should reside in the area where the accused person resides while each of the sureties must have evidence of landed property.
The Chief Magistrate, however, adjourned the case to 13th November 2019 for mention.