Former Director of Finance and Account at the Abia State Government House, Jones Udeogu, has been granted post-conviction bail by a Federal High Court in Lagos.
Udeogu was convicted alongside the former governor of Abia State, Orji Uzor Kalu, on December 5, 2019 over N7.65 billion.
While Udeogu was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment, Kalu got 12 years imprisonment.
But Udeogu, had through his counsel, Chief Solo Akuma (SAN), prayed for post-conviction bail.
When his application came up in the court on Thursday, Justice Mohammed Liman granted him a N50 million post-conviction bail pending the determination of his appeal against the judgment of Justice Mohammed Idris who sent him to prison.
His application was granted after his counsel told the judge that his client was suffering from prostate cancer and tuberculosis.
In an affidavit filed in support of the post-conviction bail application, one Lazarus Agu said the correctional facility where Udeogu was serving his jail term “does not have facility to provide the type of medical attention Udeogu requires to survive the ailments he is suffering from”.
He said, “The correctional facility authorities have failed to provide or arrange for the treatment of the 2nd defendant outside the facility.
“The type of ailment the 2nd defendant was diagnosed with is of communicable nature and exposes other inmates to great danger.”
In his judgment, Justice Liman said he was satisfied that Udeogu had disclosed reasonable cause of action to qualify for a post-conviction bail.
“I am of the opinion that this application has disclosed reasonable cause of action that the defendant’s health has greatly deteriorated and it cannot be salvaged by the doctor in the correctional service centre. Accordingly, this application is meritorious and succeeds,” the judge said.
He then granted him the sum of N50 million bail with two sureties in like sum.
Kalu had also prayed for a post-conviction bail pending the outcome of his appeal against his conviction but the judge on December 23, 2019 dismissed his application.
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