The Lagos State Government on Wednesday agreed to withdraw charges against former governorship candidate of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) in Lagos State, Babatunde Gbadamosi and his wife Folasade; and popular singer Naira Marley.
Below is the full proceedings and the conditions given to the defendants by the court.
Proceedings started at 11:20 a.m.
Naira Marley dressed in white shirt and black jeans was called into the dock.
Babatunde Gbadamosi dressed in brown native followed and third defendant, his wife, Folasade was dressed in blue top on black Jeans.
All three defendants had on facemasks.
The DPP Lagos, Yakub Oshoala led the Prosecution alongside Dr Babajide Martins a Director in the office of the DPP; Adetutu Osinusi, a Deputy Director in the office of the DPP; Jonathan Ogunsanya and Afolabi Solebo who are both assistant directors in the office of the DPP.
For the defence team, Olawale Akoni SAN alongside Dr Bayo Adaralegbe represented the second defendant, Babatunde Gbadamosi while Ebun-Olu Adegboruwa SAN alongside O. Awonuga represented the third defendant Folasade Gbadamosi.
Naira Marley was represented by Damilola Ayinde-Marshall alongside Afeez Olabisi.
After announcement of appearance, the DPP told the court that even though the state has filed a charge before the court, a few minutes before the court sat, the AG & Comm for Justice, Moyo Onigbanjo SAN forwarded a directive to him that having considered the remorsefulness of the three defendants, the AG has considered diverting the case out of court based on the defendants fulfilling three conditions.
(1) They have to write a formal apology to the Government of Lagos State which will solidify the remorsefulness shown by them.
(2) They have to give an undertaking in writing that they will continue to comply with the directives of Mr President (Muhammadu Buhari) and Mr Governor (Babajide Sanwo-Olu) which is the subject matter of the case before the court.
(3) In view of the danger which the state believes they’ve put themselves by attending a gathering exceeding 20 persons, they must agree to go on 14 days isolation to protect other members of the public from any likely danger.
Mr Oshoala also submitted that this is absolutely necessary “in view of the fact that some individuals who travelled from countries with huge COVID-19 cases were present at the party.
He stressed that the state is not a persecutor but it is always ready to enforce the laws that benefit the interest of the public.
“If they agree to these conditions, the four counts will be withdrawn and that will be the end of the matter. We will keep it in abeyance. That’s our submission,” Oshoala said.
Akoni: On behalf of the second defendant, we wish to express our appreciation to the state, the DPP and to confirm to the court that we accept the three conditions.
Adegboruwa: On behalf of the third defendant, we express our appreciation to his excellency, Mr President and the Governor, the AG, The DPP & his team, the Police and most of all the court.
The third defendant is a law-abiding citizen and accepts all that three conditions as stipulated by the DPP.
Ayinde-Marshall: On behalf of the first defendant, we say a big thank you to the police, the President, Mr Governor and the DPP.
My client is a law-abiding citizen too and a strict supporter of government policies.
We undertake that we will fulfil the three conditions given to them.
DPP: Having agreed to these conditions and having already dealt with the principal defendants, Funke Akindele and her husband, we hereby withdraw the charge before the court.
However, for the purpose of clarity, I request the defendant to put their phones numbers so that the personnel from the Ministry of Health can get in touch with them, having agreed to go into self-isolation.
Also within today and tomorrow morning latest, the undertakings must reach the AG through their lawyers and the OC Legal to show their sincerity.We are grateful to the court.
Magistrate Aje-Afunwa: This honourable court has listened to the request of the learned DPP indicating that the state requests to withdraw the charge on the condition that they fulfill all the conditions as stipulated by the prosecution.
Since the defendants have all agreed to comply with the conditions, I wish to state that the procedure for the withdrawal of a criminal charge is that before the charge is withdrawn, the conditions must be met or be seen to be met.
In the circumstances of this case, the court will adjourn to enable the defence put its house in order and the prosecution will address the court in how the defendants have complied. If all the parties agree, the court will adjourn till tomorrow.
DPP: No objections
Akoni: No objections
Adegboruwa: No objections to adjournment till tomorrow
Ayinde-Marshall: No objections.
Court: Since it was agreed on 24 hours for compliance with the conditions, the court believes 12noon tomorrow is appropriate for withdrawal of the charge.
Case is adjourned to April 9, at 12noon for withdrawal or for taking of plea if conditions fail to be complied with.
In line with the regulations of the government, we all must continue to ensure that the regulations are strictly complied with in our homes and in all public places.