Baba Ijesha Granted N2m Bail In Sexual Assault Trial
Baba Ijesha, a Nigerian actor facing a six-count charge which includes sexual assault by penetration, indecent treatment of a child, has been granted two million Naira bail by a Lagos state high court.
WithinNigeria earlier reported that the 48-year-old actor pleaded not guilty to the charges against him when he was arraigned before the court on Thursday.
Baba Ijesha’s counsel, Babatunde Ogala, implored the court to grant his client’s bail application even though the trial continues because he has been deprived of his constitutional right since his arrest in April.
He noted that the actor, whose real name is Olanrewaju James, was wrongly accused and is being tried without proof to validate the allegations against him.
Ogala, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) asked the court to give Baba Ijesha adequate time to access his lawyer and prepare for his trial. He also disclosed that there are people ready to stand as sureties for him.
The state Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Olayinka Adeyemi, however, asked the court to deny the thespian’s bail application, stating that the offences brought against the actor are “grave” in nature. She also noted that the sexual assault charge carries life imprisonment.
The prosecuting counsel said the court should be careful in its handling of the bail application, noting that the defendant could jump bail while his popularity could also affect the evidence against him in the case.
The judge, Oluwatoyin Taiwo, ordered that the actor be released on bail while the trail continues.
Taiwo said the defendant must bring the amount alongside two sureties — one of which must be a legal practitioner and the second a family relation.
The judge, however, said that the actor must perfect the bail terms and conditions within the next seven days.
She said the trial would begin on July 26 through 27 and 28, respectively.