The Magistrate Court II sitting in Warri, Delta State has remanded a Warri based cleric, Bishop Elijah Orhonigbe in prison custody for allegedly raping a nineteen-year-old girl.
The Court presided over by Mrs Ejiro.H. Diejomaoh said it lacks the jurisdiction to hear the matter.
The Court said in the event that there was no space at the Nigeria Correctional Service in Okere, Warri, the accused should be remanded at the “A” Division Police Station.
The Court also adjourned the matter to July 24 for mention.
The accused was dragged before the Court over the alleged rape of a nineteen year old girl (names withheld) by the Police.
Police prosecutor, SP Vincent Orawemen, leading DSP Sunny Irabor, had in a motion with charge No. NW/113C/2020 prayed the Court to remand the accused in prison custody pending the legal advice of the Delta State Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice.
But, Counsel to the accused, Mr. E.L. Umuze objected to the motion and prayed the Court to grant the accused bail based on its (Court) discretion.
The Warri Area Commander of the Nigeria Police, ACP Mohammed Muktar Garba, hailed the position of the Court.
ACP Garba said it will serve as a lesson to others who are hiding under the cloak of Christianity saying,” Nobody is above the law.”
The legal Adviser of the Nigeria Bar Association, NBA Warri Branch, Mr. Collins Tuoyo Osaretin Esq said the accused was arraigned and eventually remanded to the Correctional Centre, Okere in Warri.”
Human right activist, Comrade Israel Joe in a chat with newsmen hailed the Court for remanding the Cleric into prison custody.
Joe said the Police and the family of the victim should know that rape cases are not supposed to be resolved outside the Court.
According to Joe, “They should ensure that justice is served in this case because rape and defilement is crime against our society. The Police must also ensure that those involved face the music in line with the law.
Bishop Elijah Orhonigbe who has been taken to the Nigeria Correctional Service in Okere is the Founder/General Overseer of Victory Revival Fasting and Ministry in Warri, Delta State.