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Court remands Jehovah Sharp-Sharp, two others over lockdown contravention

By News Desk
A Magistrates’ Court sitting in Igbosere, Lagos State has ruled that General Overseer of Resurrection Praise Ministries International,  Archbishop Samson Benjamin, popularly called Jehovah Sharp-Sharp, and two members of his church, be remanded for contravening the lockdown order imposed by the governments. 

The two others, Jerry Abel and Johnson Benjamin, were arraigned alongside the clergyman for contravening the lockdown order imposed by President Muhammadu Buhari to flatten the curve of coronavirus in the country and social distancing directives of Lagos State Government.

Jehovah Sharp-Sharp and the others, who would be in police custody pending the perfection of the bail conditions granted by the court, were arraigned barely 24 hours after their arrest at the entrance of China Embassy in Victoria Island, Lagos and detained at the State Criminal Investigation Department (SCID) in Panti, Yaba during a protest over alleged ill-treatment melted on Nigerians in Chinese cities.

The trio pleaded not guilty when the three-count charge bordering on violating the lockdown directive and conduct likely to cause a breach of public peace.

According to the prosecutor, Babajide Martins, the defendants, Jehovah Sharp-Sharp, and the others, actions were contrary to Sections 1(1)(2) of COVID-19 Regulations 2020 and thereby committed an offence punishable under Section 5 Quarantine Act. Cap. Q2 Vol. 14, Law of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004,  Section 168(1)(2) and offense punishable under Section 122 of Criminal Law Cap. C17, Vol 3, Laws of the Lagos State 2015.
The prosecutor further argued the defendants’ actions at the premises of China embassy were punishable under sections 112 and 168(2) of Criminal Law CAP C17 Vol. 3, Law of Lagos State, 2015.
In its ruling, the court presided by Chief Magistrate, O. O. Oshin, slam N1 million bail sum on the cleric, while the two others got N500, 000 bails for pleading not guilty to the three-count charge made against them by the State’s Department of Public Prosecution (DPP).
Considering plea from the defendants’ counsels for bail, Oshin granted Jehovah Sharp-Sharp and the others bail in the amount mentioned with two sureties in like sum and they the sureties must be a Grade Level 14 officer of Federal or Lagos State government, and that the other surety must be a cleric.
Before adjourning the case till May 20, for trial, she ruled that the sureties must also produce have evidence of three years tax payable to the state government, evidence of means of livelihood and the must be residents of Lagos State.

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