From Ahmad Ibrahim, Gusau
Zamfara State Government has arraigned the two deposed Emirs at the state’s Chief Magistrate Court.
The two monarchs have been arraigned on a five-count charge that borders on criminal conspiracy, withholding of evidence, illegal possession of property and alliance with bandits.
They were arraigned at the Zamfara State Chief Magistrate Court 1 where the presiding judge, Saadu Garba heard the charges.
Counsels to the two Emirs objected to the jurisdiction of the Chief Magistrate Court to entertain the case, citing law number seven of 2019 of the state which said that all persons who proclaim Islamic faith can not be tried at the Magistrate Court except Sharia Court, hence the transfer of the matter to the upper Sharia Court 1.
The presiding Judge of the Upper Sharia Court 1, Samaru, Gusau, Justice Hadi Sani, after listening to the application for bail by defending counsels, granted the two monarchs bails on health grounds, age and considering the fact that they had been in detention for about 10 to 11 months.
The bail conditions are the two monarchs must produce three sureties who must be a prominent businessman, renowned Islamic scholar and senior civil servant who have ₦100 million.
They would remain in the state and they must seek the permission of the court whenever they need to visit the hospital for medical attention.
The State Prosecutor Aliyu Alkali had objected to the bail application on the ground that the two traditional rulers have been arraigned in court over allegations of their involvement in banditry activities.
He said the law gave the court the jurisdiction to grant or decline bail therefore they have no problem with the bail granted to the two monarchs.
The lead counsel to the deposed Emirs, Bello Usman, expressed satisfaction with the decision of the court to give the dethroned monarchs bail, given the fact that they have been in detention for about eleven months despite their health and age.