Headfort Foundation, a prison reform initiative, has detailed how two unskilled labourers, Umaru Danjuma and Mohammed Yusuf, spent three months in Ikoyi Prison, Lagos, for unproven offences.
In a Twitter thread on Monday, the foundation said that police officers from Maroko Police Station arrested the duo three months ago in Lekki.
The police officers charged Danjuma and Yusuf with the offences of damage to a vehicle and assault, alongside others who are at large, Headfort said.
According to the organisation, the magistrate presiding over their case at the Tinubu Magistrate Court granted them N100,000 bail with sureties required to pay the same amount, but they could not perfect their bail and thus remained in custody.
“The officials from Ikoyi correctional centres asked that we represent the men in court, knowing they had no lawyer,” Headfort said.
“Our lawyer, Itunuoluwa Awolu, took their brief and began their representation in court for free. She worked on perfecting their bail, but their family members who could stand as sureties for them were in Kano State.”
Headfort said that Danjuma and Mohammed’s cases came up several times after arraignment, but no witness appeared to prove the charges against them.
The organisation said the court issued a witness summons and put calls and messages across to the complainants, but they failed to show up in court.
Headfort stated that the court granted the application of its lawyer and struck out the charges for want of diligent prosecution on Monday.
“They spent 3 months in custody before regaining freedom,” Headfort said.
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