Court rejects Maina’s fresh bail variation request

The Federal High Court in Abuja on Wednesday rejected a fresh application by the defunct Pension Reform Task Team, Abdulrasheed Maina, for the review of the bail condition imposed on him in respect of his ongoing trial for money laundering.
Justice Okon Abang, in his ruling, dismissed the application which sought the second review of the bail conditions since November 26, 2019, when Maina was first granted the bail by the court.
Maina, who was granted bail by the court since November, has remained in detention in prison due to his inability to meet the conditions imposed by the court.
Following an earlier application for the review of the bail conditions, Justice Okon Abang reduced, among others, the bail sum from N1bn to N500m.
The judge, who earlier demanded two serving senators as sureties for the bail granted Maina, also reviewed it to one senator.
But Maina later filed a fresh application for further review of the condition that required him to produce a serving senator as surety.
Ruling on the application on Wednesday, Justice Abang dismissed it for lacking in merit.
“The first defendant failed to place materials before the court with, convincing reasons, to show that there exist exceptional circumstances to warrant the variation of the conditions of the bail earlier varied,” the judge ruled.
The judge had in the earlier review asked Maina to provide only one serving senator with property worth N500m in either Asokoro, Maitama, Wuse II, Central Business District, or Katampe, Abuja.
The judge also directed that the senator, who must provide the Certificate of Occupancy for the property, must not have pending criminal charges against him or her in any court in Nigeria.
He added that such a senator must accompany the defendant to all the proceedings of his trial.
The senator will also have to sign a register to be counter-signed by the registrar of the court before the commencement of proceedings.
According to the judge, only after the completion of the formality on every day of the proceedings can the senator leave the court.

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