A Lagos commercial driver, Mr. Kasali Quadri, was today arraigned before Justice Christopher Ayodeji Balogun of the Lagos High Court for the attempted murder of Justice E.A Adebajo, a member of the State judiciary.
Quadri, who has been in prison custody since March 2012, pleaded not guilty to the charge.
His lawyer, Oludare Falana, who appeared with Solomon Kehinde both of Falana & Falana Chambers, informed the court that he had a bail application for the defendant and that he was prepared to argue it in view of the fact that his client has been in detention for the past one year for what he described as “a mere traffic offence”.
The trial judge however adjourned the bail application to April 18, 2013 on the ground that he was going to a scheduled meeting with the Chief Judge.
However, the attempt by the trial judge to compel the prosecutor, Mr. W.O. Quadri, to take the evidence of Justice Adebajo, who was present in court, was vehemently opposed by Mr. Falana, who informed the court that he had not been served with the proof of evidence.
Although, the trial judge offered to give his own copy to Mr. Falana, the lawyer declined the offer on the ground that he would need to study the document after it might have been properly served by the prosecutor. Only then, he said, would he proceed to consult with his client in order to prepare his defence.
As the trial was adjourned to May 2, 2013, Justice Adebajo stormed out of the court and subjected the prosecutor to vulgar abuse for causing the case to be further adjourned. All attempts by the prosecutor to explain his predicament to Justice Adebajo were rebuffed as the judge threatened to report him to the Lagos State Attorney-General.
JD:The case is in court therefore we cant comment on it,but we can restate the facts.1.The driver drove on a one way road and hit the learned judge.2.The accused was subject to detention in prison since March 2012 almost a whole year before the case begins.3.His case is heard on March 20 and his bail application adjourned to April 18.The judge couldnt hear the bail application immediately because he had a scheduled meeting with the Chief Judge.