A 32 year old man identified as Johnson Musa was last Friday arraigned before a Lokoja Chief Magistrate Court II for allegedly taking aerial photos of the Abuja residence of Kogi state governor, Yahaya Bello’s, with a drone camera and posting it on social media. Musa posted the photos with the captioned
“This building is owned by an individual in Kogi where hunger is the people’s first name.”
The prosecuting counsel, Mohammed Abaji, who is a Senior Legal Officer with the Kogi state Ministry of Justice, told the court that by sharing the photos online, Musa threatened and exposed the state governor and members of his family to danger. Abaji said Musa was arrested by men of the State Security Service (SSS), Kogi Command, on intelligence report on August 3rd.
While being arraigned, Musa pleaded not guilty to the offense. He applied for bail orally through his counsel. The prosecutor however opposed to his bail application on the grounds that investigation into the matter was ongoing and that the penalty attached to the offense was 10 years imprisonment or option of a minimum of N25 million fine upon conviction.
The Chief Magistrate, Alhassan Husaini said by virtue of Section 36(5) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (As Amended), the presumption of innocence of the accused was constitutionally guaranteed. He then granted Musa bail in the sum of N500, 000 with two sureties in like sum and that the sureties must be resident within the jurisdiction of the court.
The case was adjourned to August 17th.