Kogi Chief Judge, Nasir Ajanah, has discharged and acquitted one Gide Garba illegally detained as an Awaiting Trial Inmate (ATM) in the Kabba Federal Prisons.
He also granted bail to another ATM Husseini Embiga also an inmate illegally detained in the same prisons.
Ajanah granted the unconditional release of Garba while reviewing cases of 17 awaiting trial inmates in the prisons on Saturday.
He said the two accused should not ordinarily be in remand as their offences did not warrant such.
The Chief Judge said Garba (aka Shingee), was charged with criminal conspiracy, belonging to a gang of thieves and kidnappers but was dumped in the prison.
He was not taken before any court of competent jurisdiction for five months as required under the constitution.
“I am therefore left with no choice than to order for his immediate release from detention unconditionally.
“The accused is hereby ordered to be released forthwith”, he said.
Garba, a commercial motorcyclist, told the visiting Chief Judge that he took a passenger to Isanlu and on getting there, the passenger pleaded that he should be taken to Kabba and he agreed at a fee.
On getting to Kabba, he said, the Passenger pleaded with him to wait a little bit for the person he came to see and bought him soft drinks, while they waited only to be arrested a few minutes later by two men while his passenger simply walked away.
Husseini Embiga, a Tiv farmer in Kogi, charged with criminal trespass and theft of motor battery was released on bail by the Chief Judge on the ground that the offences were bailable.
“These offences are ordinarily bailable. I am surprised that the trial Upper Area Court could not avail the accused of the opportunity of going on bail.
“The accused is hereby granted bail in the sum of N2, 000 and one surety in like sum.
“In view of the nature of the case as presented by the trial Upper Area Court Judge, he is hereby directed to ensure that this case is heard and determined within the next one week,” the Chief Judge said.
“I am impressed with the fact that there are fewer people awaiting trial and those convicted.
“Out of the 63 inmates, there are only 19 ATMs that mean that our effort at decongesting the prisons is working very well,” the CJ said.