September 25, 2022

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Kuje: Dismissed teacher returns to prison, gets bail

An Abuja-based teacher, Igoche Adah, who was dismissed for alleged sexual molestation, was among inmates that escaped from prison custody when gunmen attacked the Kuje Custodial Centre last week.

Adah, who was charged with sexual molestation before Justice Akeem Fashola of the Federal Capital Territory High Court, Jabi, was remanded on June 23.

The FCT Commissioner of Police, Sunday Babaji, had put the dismissed teacher on trial on charges of sexual abuse.

Adah was accused of repeatedly touching the breasts and other sensitive parts of a 14-year-old student of Destiny Academy, Lugbe, Abuja, where he was teaching.

The defendant, however, pleaded not guilty to the charge, punishable under Section 32 of the Child Rights Act.

During proceedings on Thursday, the accused person was not present, fuelling speculation that he might have escaped from prison where he was remanded.

His defence counsel, Terka Aondo, confirmed that Adah escaped from custody during the attack.

He, however, claimed that the accused had returned to custody, but warders failed to produce him in court due to hiccups in logistics.

Earlier, Justice Fashola admitted the defendant to bail in the sum of N500,000 after 21 days in remand.

While delivering the ruling, the judge remarked that bail in a criminal matter was entirely at the discretion of the court.

The judge specifically held that the sexual molestation charge against the dismissed teacher was bailable.

In another ruling, Justice Fashola vacated the arrest warrant earlier issued against the defendant during the period he refused to appear in court to take his plea.

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The court held that having been arrested, arraigned and his plea taken on June 23, the issue of bench warrant had been overtaken by events.

Justice Fashola subsequently fixed October 27, 2022, for trial.