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Baba Ijesha granted bail after 25 days in detention

Olanrewaju ‘Baba Ijesha’ James, Nollywood actor accused of sexual assault, has been granted bail — after nearly a month in police detention.

BBC Pidgin quoted Adeshina Ogulana, the counsel to the film star, as confirming the report on Monday evening.

Ogulana was also quoted to have said that he was released on bail by the magistrates in charge of prison decongestion.

Baba Ijesha had been in the custody of the Lagos police CID since April 22, after he was alleged to have sexually assaulted a 14-year-old-girl in the home of Adekola Adekanya, a comedienne also called Princess.

Due to the strike by the Judicial Staff Union of Nigeria (JUSUN), courts have been shut and cases, including that of the movie star, had been placed on hold.

Moyosore Onigbanjo, the commissioner for justice, had earlier said that the state’s directorate of public prosecution (DPP) recommended five charges against the actor — putting him at risk of being sentenced to life imprisonment.

Yomi Fabiyi, another Nollywood actor, had staged a protest at the Panti police station seeking Baba Ijesha’s release on administrative bail. He had claimed that the confession obtained from the actor was made under duress.

The DPP had later asked the police to retain Baba Ijesha, adding that the case against him is sexual assault by penetration.

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