When hearing on the Senatorâ€™s bail application came up today before Justice Ladipo Abimbola of High Court 3 in Ibadan, Akala and the police told the courtÂ that releasing Senator Folarin would obstruct the course of justice.
In a counter motion jointly prepared by the state government through the Attorney-General andÂ Oyo State Commissioner for Justice, Are Abdulsalam and theÂ Commissioner of Police, Alhaji Adisa Baba Bolanta, the appeal to refuse the bail application was in the interest of justice. In a 30 paragraph counterÂ affidavit deposed to by Ibrahim Oyemonla Tijani, the state government and police authorities affirmed that contrary to paragraph 14 of the bail application,Â Folarin and others actually harassed and molested innocent people with dangerous weapons.
They argued that Folarin and his supporters invaded the venue of the local government congress at Olunloyo area and caused mayhem that resulted in the deathÂ of the factional leader of the National Union of Road Transport Workers, NURTW,Â Alhaji Lateeef Salako alias Eleweomo. The affidavit reads:
â€œThat contrary to paragraph 17 of the 1st applicantâ€™s affidavit in support, the applicant actually quickly went into hiding immediately after the attack heÂ executed against the deceased (Alhaji Lateef Salako) when he led a number of thugs to attack him and some other persons with guns and cutlasses.
â€œThat contrary to paragraph 37 of the affidavit in support of the 1st applicantâ€™s application, the 1st applicant will interfere and influence the outcome ofÂ the investigation of the police by virtue of his political connection and privilege of office.
â€œThat the 1st applicant will interfere with further investigation of the police being carried out in respect of the other suspects at large and in respect ofÂ other victims whose statements are yet be obtained at their various hospitals, given their political connection.â€
The counter affidavit was supported with seven different statements of some witnesses obtained by the police and marked exhibit B, C, D, E, F and G dulyÂ signed by CSP Emuobo Fred Ekokotu, Muslim Muili, Adeleke Kazeem, Sikiru Adeagbo, PC Aderoju Abiola, ASP Mathew Adisa, and Adesiyan Solomon.
Others standing trial with Senator Folarin are Ramoni Jayeola Bankole, Olaide Raji and Raimi Ismaila while Tunde Ogunyemi, Corporal Adejuigbe Olaniyi, PCÂ Adeyemi Jimoh, Corporal Azozo Nuhu and Pius Joseph are at large.
Reacting, lead counsel to Senator Folarin, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN, who led other 21 lawyers including Adeniyi Akintola, SAN, urged the court to standÂ down the case till 12 noon so as to be able peruse the counter affidavit he was served in the court.
Because the respondentâ€™s counsel, Mr. Chukwuma Ekomaro did not object to the prayer, Justice Ladipo AbimbolaÂ granted the prayer.
He ordered that all parties should reconvene by 12 noon to argue thier position which would be used to determine whether the senator should be granted bailÂ or not.
The matter was in progress at the time of filing this report.
â€” Gbenro Adesina/Ibadan