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Court grants bail to journalist Agba Jalingo

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Justice Zainab Abubakar of the Federal High Court, Abuja has granted a bail of N500,000 to a journalist, Agba Jalingo, with one surety in like sum. Justice Abubakar had last Monday remanded Jalingo in prison after he was arraigned by the Nigerian Police Force for allegedly publishing a story that was considered an insult to one Mrs Elizabeth Ayade, who is the wife of the younger brother of Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State.

Jalingo was specifically accused of engaging in a false publication that was intended to cause annoyance, ill will, and an insult to Mrs Ayade.

When he was arraigned before the court last week, Jalingo pleaded not guilty to the charge which is punishable under section 24 (1) (b) of the Cybercrimes (Prohibition, Prevention, etc.) Act 2015.

Aside from the five hundred thousand naira bail bond, Justice Abubakar held that the surety must be an owner of a landed property within the Federal Capital Territory. The judge ordered that the title deed of the said property must be deposited with the deputy registrar in charge of litigations of the courts. Besides, the court held that the surety must also depose to an affidavit of means.

Justice Abubakar held that the defendant should remain in prison custody, pending the perfection of his bail conditions. The judge adjourned the case till 31st May for trial.

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