Sunday, July 25, 2021

Police arraign two men for “hijacking” #EndSARS protest

The defendants are being charged with riot, disobedience to lawful order issued by the constituted authority and attempted arson.

• March 16, 2021
#EndSARs Protesters
#EndSARs Protesters (Photo Credit: PIUS UTOMI EKPEI / AFP)

Two men who allegedly participated in the #EndSARS protest and attempted to set Ojo Local Government Area secretariat ablaze were on Tuesday brought before a Yaba Chief Magistrates’ Court in Lagos.

They are Ugwumba Chimezie, 20, and Mbah Nicholas, 32.

They are facing a three-count charge of riot, disobedience to lawful order issued by the constituted authority and attempted arson.

A prosecuting lawyer with the State Criminal Investigations Department (CID), William Ologun, told the court that the defendants committed the offence on October 23, 2020, at Ojo Police Station, Lagos.

According to him, the defendants were members of the #EndSARS protests and they had hijacked the peaceful protest, using it to incite a riot.

He said that the defendants also disobeyed the 72-hour curfew imposed by the Lagos State Government on October 20, 2020.

Mr. Ologun further told the court that the defendants had attempted to set the Ojo Police Station on fire, but were arrested before they could light the station up.

He said the offences contravened Sections 45 (1), 123 and 342 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State, 2015 (Revised).

Section 342 imposes 14 years imprisonment for attempted arson, while 45(2) stipulates three years imprisonment for a riot.

Magistrate A. Owolabi admitted the defendants to bail in the sum of N50,000 each with two sureties in like sum.

She directed that the two sureties must be residing within the court’s jurisdiction and be gainfully employed with an evidence of three years tax payment to the Lagos State Government.

Mrs. Owolabi adjourned the case until April 30 for mention.

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