Three deposed monarchs dragged to court over alleged banditry activities

Zamfara State government has finally decided to bring charges against three traditional leaders suspected of sponsoring banditry in the state.

The three monarchs were arraigned at the chief magistrate court in Gusau on a five-count charge bordering on criminal conspiracy, and illegal possession of properties as a result of the alliance with bandits.

The State Commissioner for Information, Ibrahim Magaji Dosara, said the monarchs were arraigned at the Chief Magistrate Court 1 where the presiding Judge, Saadu Garba heard charges against them on various offences.

However, Counsels to two of the Emirs objected to the jurisdiction of the chief magistrate court to entertain the case citing law number 7 of 2019 in Zamfara State.

They claimed all persons who proclaim Islamic faith cannot be tried at the magistrate court except in a 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 three monarchs bails on health grounds, age, and also considering they had been in detention for about 10 to 11 months.

He asked the monarchs to produce as their bail conditions, three sureties, who must be prominent businessmen, renowned Islamic scholars and senior civil servants worth N100 million

He warned that they must remain in the state and 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.

The lead counsel to the deposed traditional rulers, 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.

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