Jones Abiri

The Federal High Court in Abuja on Monday softened the bail condition for a Bayelsa State-based journalist, Mr Jones Abiri, who was on June 24 arraigned on three counts of terrorism, economic sabotage and fraud.

Justice Ijeoma Ojukwu had earlier granted him N100m bail with one surety in like sum, wherein she ordered that the surety must own a landed property in Abuja metropolis.

Abiri was unable to meet the requirements to regain his freedom, forcing his counsel, Mr Samuel Ogala, to apply before the court to vary the bail terms, according to the News Agency of Nigeria.

The judge on Monday gave Abiri new bail conditions.

In the varied bail terms, Ojukwu ordered one Mr Frederick Lokpobri, a level 14 officer of the Federal Ministry of Power, who elected to stand as surety for Abiri, to swear to an affidavit.

The judge ordered Lokpobri to swear to an affidavit of means commensurate with the bail sum earlier granted.

He was also asked to in furtherance, deposit originals of the title documents of his landed property situated at the Nassarawa axis before the court registrar.

Ogala in a motion dated September 2 and filed on September 3, informed the court that his client was unable to meet the previous bail conditions because Abiri knew no one with a landed property within Abuja metropolis.

The Federal prosecutor, Mr Bagudu Sani, opposed the bail application in a counter-affidavit, urging the court to discountenance it.

Counsel to Abiri argued that the prosecution failed to adduce cogent reasons the application for variation should not be granted.

Ojukwu granted the bail application and adjourned the matter until October 17 for trial.

Addressing journalists after the court proceedings, Ogala said he hoped Abiri would be released after perfecting the new bail conditions.

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