I Have No Criminal Record – Miyetti Allah President, Badejo ‘Cries’ Out In Court

The embattled President of the Miyetti Allah Kautal Hore, Bello Bodejo, who is currently detained, has informed the Federal High Court in Abuja that he does not have a criminal record.

NewsTimes reports that Bodejo, who was arrested for allegedly forming an armed militia that poses a threat to the nation’s unity, made this statement in a bail application submitted by his lawyer, Ahmed Raji, SAN.

The Miyetti Allah leader also mentioned that he has been suffering from serious health issues while in custody.

The motion, dated March 28 and identified as charge number FHC/ABJ/CR/141/2024, requests the court to grant him bail on lenient terms until the case against him is heard and resolved.

On March 22, Bodejo, who was apprehended in Malia, Nasarawa State, on January 23 and held by the Defence Intelligence Agency (DIA), appeared before Justice Ekwo for arraignment.

He faced a three-count charge related to terrorism.

The detained president of Miyetti Allah presented nine reasons for his bail request, arguing that the charges against him were eligible for bail.

“The defendant/applicant has no criminal record whatsoever,” he said.

According to his statement, his reputation is a testament not only to his reliability and credibility but also to his commitment to not flee if granted bail.

He claimed to have experienced serious health issues, which he considered an exceptional circumstance warranting bail.

Bodejo contended that according to Section 36 (5) of the 1999 Constitution (as amended), he is to be presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Furthermore, he argued that the charges brought against him did not establish a prima facie case.

He assured the court that he would not obstruct the investigation or any further inquiries into the allegations against him.

The accused, who promised to always be present for his trial on time, expressed his willingness to provide suitable sureties as required by the court.

In a counter affidavit sworn by Noma Wando, a litigation clerk at the Department of Public Prosecutions, Federal Ministry of Justice, it was argued that the court should reject Bodejo’s request for bail.

Wando stated that Bodejo was facing charges related to terrorism, specifically the establishment of an ethnic militia in Nasarawa State, as well as involvement in activities that pose a threat to national security and public safety.

The official claimed that Bodejo had provided support, assistance, and transportation for activities linked to these offences, which are in violation of specific sections of the Terrorism (Prevention and Prohibition) Act of 2022.

Following his arraignment, the court ordered Bodejo to be held in DIA custody, scheduled an expedited trial, and set the trial dates from May 27 to May 30.

Wando refuted the claim that Bodejo was suffering from a life-threatening health condition that could not be adequately addressed at the DIA Medical Centre in Abuja.

He mentioned that the DIA is located next to the State House Medical Centre in Abuja, which is known for having top-notch doctors, specialists, and consultants.

He also stated that the DIA Medical Centre could attend to Bodejo’s medical requirements if necessary, even though he does not have any life-threatening health issues that cannot be managed there.

He clarified that despite Bodejo’s claims, he was only diagnosed with high blood pressure, which has been effectively treated by the centre.

Abubakar argued that the detained Miyetti Allah president would not face any injustice if bail was not granted.

He explained that the Federal Government’s detention and custodial facilities always ensure that the medical needs of detainees are met, and they are prepared to provide special medical treatment when necessary.

During the hearing on Wednesday, Dr Sulaiman Usman, SAN, representing Bodejo, informed the court that they had a bail application scheduled for consideration.

However, he mentioned that they were not prepared to proceed with the motion as the prosecution had just served them with their counter affidavit the day before.

The senior attorney mentioned that additional time would be necessary to address the new issues presented in the counter affidavit.

Prosecutor Y. A. Imana did not object to Usman’s request for a postponement.

Usman also verbally requested that Bodejo be allowed to consult with his legal counsel, as mandated by law.

He emphasized that the accused should have sufficient time and resources to mount a defence. However, Imana disputed Usman’s claim that Bodejo had not been granted access to his lawyers.

She stated that she was unaware of such an allegation.

The attorney added that in addition to ensuring compliance with the court’s previous order granting Bodejo access to his doctor, the defendant’s lawyer confirmed that he had visited him in custody.

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