The Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday softened the bail conditions for a Bayelsa-based journalist, Jones Abiri.
Concise News reports that on June 24, Abiri was arraigned on a three-count charge of terrorism, economic sabotage and fraud.
Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu had earlier granted him N100 million bail with one surety in like sum, wherein she ordered that the surety must own a landed property in Abuja metropolis.
Abiri was unable to meet the requirements to regain his freedom, forcing his counsel, Samuel Ogala, to apply before the court to vary the bail terms.
The judge, however, on Monday gave Abiri new bail conditions.
In the varied bail terms, Ojukwu ordered one Frederick Lokpobri, a level 14 officer of the Federal Ministry of Power who elected to stand as surety for Abiri, to swear to an affidavit.
The judge ordered Lokpobri to swear to an affidavit of means commensurate with the bail sum earlier granted.
He was also asked to in furtherance, deposit originals of the title documents of his landed property situated at the Nassarawa axis before the court registrar.
Ogala in a motion dated September 2 and filed on September 3, informed the court that his client was unable to meet the previous bail conditions because Abiri knew no one with a landed property within Abuja metropolis.
The Federal Prosecutor, Bagudu Sani, opposed the bail application in a counter affidavit, urging the court to discountenance it.
Counsel to Abiri, argued that the prosecution failed to adduce cogent reasons why the application for variation should not be granted.
Ojukwu granted the bail application and adjourned the matter until October 17 for trial.
While addressing newsmen after the court proceedings, Ogala said he hoped Abiri would be released after perfecting the new bail conditions.
Use federal might to attract devt. to Bayelsa, not violence, Dickson tells Sylva
In related news, Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa state has urged the Minister of State for Petroleum, Chief Timipre Sylva, to use his position to attract development to the state and not use ‘federal might’ to cause violence during the November 16 governorship election.
Dickson stated this on Monday in Yenagoa during the official flag-off of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governorship campaign in the state.
He urged Sylva, a former governor of the state, to realise that it was time to bring back the Brass NLNG, Brass fertilizer project and other infrastructure, which would impact positively on the lives of an average Bayelsan.
The governor insisted that PDP would win the governorship election, based on his achievements and performance in governance, which, he said, had made the party very popular among Ijaw people.
He explained that the party’s governorship candidate, Senator Douye Diri, had garnered the requisite experience in governance and was, therefore, prepared to take over the mantle of leadership and continue with the giant strides that PDP was known for in the state.
Dickson said: “I want to advise the leader of APC, Timipre Sylva; while we know he is a politician, let him not forget to bring our needed development to us.
“This is the time to bring back Brass NLNG, which is in his local government, and the Brass Fertilizer; this is the time to work with me and the government of Bayelsa to bring infrastructures to this state.
“Let him not use ‘federal might’ for politicking only; federal might is meant for development. We, on our part, are doing our best; everything you have here is courtesy of the PDP government.
“From Diepreye Alamieyesigha to our former president; and even Sylva, some of the good things he did was done under the PDP government; since he went to the other side, he has not added any value to our state.
“But he has the opportunity now, and we thank the president for appointing him. Let him not use that federal might to bring soldiers and police to kill and intimidate us during election again as it was used in 2015.
“We heard people saying that Bayelsa can be won by APC; what you see here is a tip of the iceberg. It will take you one hour to get here; it’s like this in every local government, ward and community; this state is totally PDP”.
The governor cautioned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies against intimidation and harassment of the electorate.
“Please don’t use your power to advance the evil ambition of any politician; our state has been peaceful, and we will continue to work with security agencies to make it even more peaceful,” he said.
The PDP governorship candidate expressed appreciation to the people of the state for standing by the party since 1999 and promised not to disappoint them.
Diri promised to harness the aquatic wealth of the state for the good of the people and ensure youth empowerment, while continuing to attract investments into the state to boost its economy.