A Benue State Division of the Federal High Court on Tuesday remanded the wife of a suspended lecturer in the state, Andrew Ogbuja, in prison for alleged child abuse.
Mr Ogbuja’s wife, Felicia, will be in prison until she meets her bail bond.
She was arraigned on a two-count charge for allegedly failing to protect 13-year-old Ochanya Ogbanje who died following complications from sexual abuses while she was living as a ward, with the Ogbujas.
Mrs Ogbuja was brought before the court by the National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP).
She pleaded not guilty to the charges against her.
After taking her plea, the lawyers on both sides argued the request for Mrs Ogbuja’s bail.
But the court in its ruling ordered the accused to be remanded in prison until she can provide two sureties with a bond of N2 million each.
The court presided over by a judge, Mobolaji Olajuwon, also gave the following bail conditions to the defence team.
– The defendant is admitted to bail in the sum of N2 million with two sureties in like sum.
– The sureties must be civil servants not less than grade-level 12.
– They must own properties within the jurisdiction of this court.
– The sureties must submit letters of introduction from their Head of Department to the Court Registrar.
– They must submit the Certificates of Occupancy of their properties, which must be verified by the Court Registrar.
Mr Ogbuja is also facing trial for allegedly abusing the late Ochanya.
He was taken before an area court in the state by the Benue State government.
Mr Ogbuja had asked the court for bail, citing the failure of the Benue State government to arraign him in a High Court.
The prosecution lawyer, Awashima Addingi, has repeatedly failed to respond to queries by this newspaper regarding the expected amendment of Mr Ogbuja’s charges.
Multiple sources have, however, confirmed to PREMIUM TIMES that Mr Ogbuja is set to be arraigned at a state High Court after the charges against him are amended.
Mr Ogbuja’s son, Victor, who was also arraigned with his father for sexually assaulting the late victim has since absconded.
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