A Kogi State High Court sitting in Lokoja on Wednesday granted bail to Senator Dino Melaye standing trial on offences bordering on criminal conspiracy and dealing in firearms alongside with two others.
The trial judge and Chief Judge of the state, Justice Nasir Ajanah granted the bail while ruling on the bail application filed on behalf of the senator by his counsel, Chief Mike Ozekhome (SAN).
Ajanah in his ruling held that documentary evidence tendered in the case, showed that Melaye was suffering from some ailments, hence the decision of the court to grant the bail application.
“In addition to the asthma which the third defendant is alleged to be suffering from, the last medical examination shows him to have what is referred to as ‘soft tissue trauma and stress related hypertension.’
“I consider this health situation to be a special circumstance entitling the third defendant to the discretion of this court in admitting him to bail.
“In the circumstance of this case and in the light of the documentary evidence and the state of health of the 3rd Defendant, I am convinced that he is not likely to evade his trial.
“I believe that at this stage in which it is shown from the nature of the charges that the prosecution has concluded their investigation, attention should be paid more to the expeditious prosecution of the main case”, the judge ruled.
He therefore granted bail to Melaye in the sum of N10 million with one surety in like sum.
He also ruled that the surety must be a person of means and should depose to an affidavit of means with verifiable address.
Reacting to the ruling, Counsel to the defendant, Mike Ozekhome said the ruling has taken judiciary in the country to a higher altitude.
“What the court has done today is to show that not withstanding the blaring sirens of power; notwithstanding the frightening sounds of executive jackbut; the judiciary remains the last hope of the common man and the common woman and that that justice symbolised by the blindfolded woman sees no power, fears no voices of tyranny or of subjugation or of repression or of oppression.
“It hears only the voice of justice; it hears only the voice of God and only the voice of fairness. That is what the judiciary has again demonstrated today.
“The judge found in favor of Senator Dino Melaye on all counts. First, he dismissed the fresh objection raised by the prosecution for him to reopen the matter of variation which he has decided a week earlier by varying the bail condition of the magistrate court which has said that Dino should be kept in a police custody where he will be afforded medical treatment.
“This court has varied that condition that Dino should be taken to the national hospital Abuja.
“He was able to pierce through the the affidavit and documentary evidence and found nothing that Dino is the kind of person that would evade trial or would run away from justice or there was a previous antecedent which showed that he has ever dealt in firearms”, Ozekhome said.