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PATIENCE OKORO EYE v. THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA

(2018) LPELR-43599(SC)

In The Supreme Court of Nigeria

On Friday, the 19th day of January, 2018

SC.154/2016


Before Their Lordships

OLABODE RHODES-VIVOUR Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

MARY UKAEGO PETER-ODILI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

CLARA BATA OGUNBIYI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

AMIRU SANUSI Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria

SIDI DAUDA BAGE Justice of The Supreme Court of Nigeria


Between

PATIENCE OKORO EYE - Appellant(s)

AND

THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA - Respondent(s)


Other Citations

; ;


Summary

INTRODUCTION:
This appeal borders on bail.

FACTS:
This is an appeal against the judgment of the Court of Appeal, Ibadan division wherein the Court affirmed the ruling of Federal High Court Ibadan which refused to admit the appellant, then applicant to bail.

The Appellant Mrs. Patience Okoro Eye and five others, namely Afolabi Olufemi Johnson, Ilori Adekunle Sunday, Asemota Augustina, Kolawole Babalola, Olaniran Muniru Adeola and Fatai Adedokun Yusuf were on 2nd June, 2015 arraigned before the Federal High Court, Ibadan Judicial Division, charged with abuse of office, corrupt practices, fraud and illegally owning assets. After pleading not guilty to each of the five counts, the appellant applied for bail. At the close of arguments by counsel on the application, the learned trial judge dismissed the appellant's application for bail on the ground that there were no strong and concrete reasons why the Court could exercise its discretion in favour of the appellant, and instead, the Court ordered accelerated hearing.

Aggrieved by the Federal High Court's refusal to admit her to bail, she appealed to the Court of Appeal which endorsed and affirmed the Ruling of the trial Court refusing the bail. She again became disenchanted with the Court of Appeal's refusal to admit her to bail and then she further appealed to the Supreme Court.

ISSUES:
The Court determined the appeal on a lone issue as follows:
"Whether the lower Court was right in refusing to interfere with the exercise of discretion of the learned trial judge refusing to admit the appellant to bail pending the determination of her trial."
DECISION/HELD:
In the final analysis, the sole issue for determination in the appeal was resolved in favour of the appellant. The Court found merit in the appeal and it was thereby allowed.


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