Olanrewaju Omiyinka’s (Baba Ijesha) legal representatives, Kayode Olabiran and Oluwaseyi Ogunbiyi, have refused to comment on a recent GoFundMe account opened by his “friends” to cover his legal expenses.
The GoFundMe is titled “Help Olanrewaju Omiyinka with Legal Costs” while the fundraiser is Oladele Matti, an Ireland-based Yoruba filmmaker.
Mr Matti said the GoFundMe page was meant to help raise €50,000 (N24m) to “cover the legal costs of a complicated and lengthy process that will likely offer the best chance of successfully obtaining fairness and justice.”
His explanation read: “Olanrewaju Omiyinka, aka Baba Ijesha, is a popular actor/comedian. He was charged to court on June 25, 2021 after spending over two months in police custody without bail.
”An act, which breached his fundamental human rights. In view of the above, Olarenwaju Omiyinka aka Baba Ijesha’s friends, fans, and supporters have started this GoFundMe campaign to give a helping hand to raise funds to pay for his legal expenses. Thank you for your love and support!”
As of the last check on Wednesday evening, the sum of €29 (N14,000) has been donated since the account was opened 24 hours ago.
Mum’s the word
When PREMIUM TIMES contacted Baba Ijesha’s lawyers on Wednesday evening, they both said they were not aware of the GoFundMe account and declined to comment on the matter.
While Mr Olabiran said he was not in the know, Mrs Ogunbiyi said she was aware and then said, “At the moment, I cannot say I want to associate or dissociate myself from the GoFundMe.”
However, she said she does not have any access to the fundraiser, Mr Matti.
When asked if she was aware of the reason the fundraiser was set up, Mrs Ogunbiyi said, “My client is not very buoyant. He has been detained for too long and has not made money.”
She also mentioned that she and the other lawyer are not likely to “withdraw their services” should their client be unable to pay their legal fees.
In June, Baba Ijesha was arraigned before the Special Offences Court in Lagos on charges of sexual assault, indecent treatment of a child, and sexual assault by penetration.
Oluwatoyin Taiwo, the judge, granted the defendant bail in the sum of N2m.
She said granting him bail is to release him from the custody of the law and entrust him to appear for trial when required to.
Mr Olabiran also told this newspaper that Baba Ijesha “perfected his bail conditions since last week Tuesday (June 29).”
Baba Ijesha was apprehended by the Lagos police in April for allegedly raping a minor.
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