An Ikeja Chief Magistrates’ Court yesterday issued a bench warrant for the arrest of seven students of the Lagos State University (LASU) charged with breach of the peace during their June 4 protest against a hike in fees.
The Chief Magistrate, Mrs. Eniola Fabamwo, also ordered that their sureties be arrested for disobeying court’s order.
The students are Olamide Bolarinwa, 23; Oludare Olayinka, 18; Victoria Oni, 18; Timilehin Fatukasi, 19; Taiwo Ajayi, 24; Taiwo Olatimihan, 20; and Segun Akani, 27.
Fabamwo said the court’s decision followed the non-appearance of the students and their sureties in court since their arraignment.
Earlier, the prosecutor, ASP Samson Ekikere, had applied for the warrant, saying the defendants had refused to attend court sittings to frustrate the prosecution of the case. “It is a tactic to delay and frustrate the prosecution of this case.
“I have my witnesses and the complainant is present in court. I hereby apply for a bench warrant against the defendants,” he told the court.
The accused, News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), were arraigned along with one Babatunde Bolarinwa, 24, who was, however, present in court.
They were arraigned on June 4 on a charge of breach of peace.
According to the prosecutor, the seven students conducted themselves in a manner likely to cause a breach of peace by hijacking a Lagos State Government mass transit bus (LAGBUS).
He alleged that the students hijacked the bus with registration no. SMK 719 XK on June 3 at Ladipo Bus Stop, Oshodi, while protesting the hike in their school fees.
The offence contravened Section 166 (d) of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2011, Ekikere said.
The accused, who pleaded not guilty to the charge, were granted bail in the sum of N10,000 each with one surety each in like sum.
The magistrate adjourned the case to October 29 for mention.