By NewsCritic Reporters
Three days after Justice E. Asiago of the federal High Court sitting in Umuahia the Abia State capital granted him bail along with 17 other youths from Ohafia, Ifekwe Udo the founder of the church of Lucifer, Ohafia is still not out of prison. Reason: No traditional ruler or title chief in the area have agreed to sign surety for his release.
Newscritic online reports that Justice Asiago of the federal high court Umuahia had on Monday July 20, 2020 granted bail to Ifekwe following his bail application. They were granted bail in the sum of N1,000,000 each with two sureties one of which must be a traditional ruler from Ohafia or a titled chief from the same locality and a senior civil servant.
However, the prosecuting counsel S.A Ofoegbu Esq in response to the motion for his release argued that their interest is not to punish the defendants but to ensure they appear for trial.
Barrister Ofoegbu demanded that stringent conditions be applied in granting the 3rd defendant, Ifekwe bail, saying that the sureties must also be people with verifiable addresses.
In spite of strong opposition mounted by the defence counsel, Barrister Ibeka over the demand that stringent conditions should be applied in granting bail to the 3rd accused, Ifekwe, of the church of Lucifer Ohafia, justice Asiago held that he would not lower the standard because of one man.
Family members of Ifekwe who are pursuing his release from prison custody told this reporter that none of the traditional rulers or recognised chiefs from Ohafia has agreed to stand surety for him because of the peculiarity of his case. They, however, disclosed that a civil servant has agreed to surety him.
Asked what their next line of action would be, they said they do not know but are still making efforts to see if they can convince any title chief in Ohafia to sign his bail bond to secure his release.
At the time of writing this report, Ifekwe is still in detention waiting for a traditional ruler from Ohafia to come forward and surety him along with the senior civil servant.
The wife of the suspect Mrs Ifekwe said her husband is innocent of the allegations against him, adding that he is a good man who has helped many youths in the community.