An Ebute-Metta Magistrate Court on Tuesday directed the police to remand in custody 17 suspects held in connection with the killing of the Managing Director Lekki Free Trade Zone, Tajudeen Disu.
Mr. Disu died from gunshot injuries after he was attacked during a peace mission to one of the communities in the Free Trade Zone area in Ibeju Lekki.
The prosecuting counsel, in an application, asked the court to remand the suspects in police custody pending further investigation.
Ruling, the Magistrate, Folashade Botoku said, “Having listened to the arguments of both the prosecuting and the defence counsels, I quite agree with the defence on the issue of jurisdiction of this court to hear a case of murder against the suspects brought before this court”.
She explained what was brought before her was not a charge but an application to remand the suspects in custody to enable the police to conduct thorough investigation.
Ms. Botoku said Section 264 of the Administration of Criminal Justice 2011 (Sections 1 and 2) empowers the court to entertain such application.
On the application for bail as requested by the counsel to the accused, the Magistrate said that while section 264 empower the court to grant leave to remand the suspects in custody, the same section does not empower the court to grant the suspects bail since it lacks jurisdiction to hear murder case.
She said the court, therefore, could consider the application for bail.
The court thereby ordered that the 17 suspects, Dele Ajayi ; Tajudeen Jegede ; Saidi Akanni; Oyelade Taiwo; Sunday Bulus; Abiola Ogunsanwo; Okunaya Stephen; Taiwo Gafar; Agunrege Banji; Gafaru Ahmed; Moses Okoro; Talabi Quadri; Ipaye Oriyomi; Quadri Yusuf and Tunde Yusuf, be remanded in police custody for 30 days pending further investigation by the Police.
Mr. Disu was murdered on Monday during a peace mission to one of the villages in the Ibeju Lekki area. The Chief Security Officer of the Lekki Free Trade Zone, Bala Usman also sustained serious injuries during the attack.
Meanwhile, the Lagos House of Assembly has urged Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to arrest the murderers of Mr Disu and address small arms proliferation in the state.
The House observed that the problems of a land grabber known as “omo onile” is going out of hand in the state and promised to pass into law a bill to address the menace.
Moshood Oshun (Lagos Mainland 2) said the traditional ruler (Baale) of the area should be arrested for defending the violence that led to the death on Mr. Disu.
He said the Baale should by now be “behind bars for saying that they were fighting for their land after somebody had been killed”.
The senator representing Lagos East, Gbenga Ashafa, and the All Progressives Congress have also condemned the killing.
Mr. Ashafa, in a statement, said: “The sad news of the untimely passing of my good friend, fellow progressive and fellow constituent reached me with shock.
“It shook me to the core as his loss leaves a huge gap amongst the tribe of intellectual and successful Lagosians.
“Disu was a visionary; a man who saw possibilities when others saw obstacles. It was his can-do spirit that gave needed impetus to the Lekki Free Trade Zone and many other laudable initiatives in the area.
“His passing proves that life is transient. It urges us all –leaders and followers – to do the best with every second granted us by the Almighty.
“The dearly departed has run his race and did his best. May Allah grant him Al-jannah Firdaus.”
The APC’s Publicity Secretary, Joe Igbokwe, urged security agents to arrest the killers.
In a statement, he said: “The killing portends grave danger to the effort to develop the state and country.
“We believe that the perpetrators are sworn enemies of progress.
“We believe that the law must exert maximum pressure to send the message that such extreme cases of bestiality are not tolerable under the new order evolving in Nigeria today.
“Disu was a tested and competent technocrat who had worked hard for the progress and development of Lagos.
“His commitment to the effort to provide a conducive environment for investments in Lagos is unquantifiable and his dreams of a Lagos that drives innumerable investments and limitless opportunities remain indelible.
“Lagos will miss this rounded technocrat.”
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