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BREAKING NEWS: Alleged NYSC certificate forgery: Bayelsa senator gets N50m bail

A High Court of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Apo on Thursday granted bail bail to the Senator representing Bayelsa Central, Benson Konbowei at N50 million.

Konbowei was arraigned on March 26 on a three-count charge in which he was among others, accused of allegedly forging the National Youth Service Corps certificate.

He was allowed to go home pending the ruling on his bail application.

Delivering the ruling yesterday, Justice Christopher Oba said he was mindful of granting bail to Konbowei and proceeded to admit him to bail at N50 million.

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Justice Oba said: “The law is settled that bail is at the discretion of the court. Taking a look at the matter, it is not a capital offence.

“Bail is granted to the defendant at N50 million with two sureties in like sum.”

The judge said the sureties must have landed property within the court’s jurisdiction with authentic Certificates of Occupancy (C-of-O).

He rejected an oral application by the defendant’s lawyer, Gordy Uche (SAN), that he be allowed to write an undertaking to produce the senator in court till he is able to perfect the bail.

Justice Oba ordered that the defendant be remanded in prison until he is able to meet the bail conditions.

The prosecution had earlier called a witness, a former senator, Moses Cleopas, who said he wrote a letter to the defendant’s primary school and discovered some inconsistencies in his certificate.

Led in evidence by prosecuting lawyer, Reuben Egwuaba sought to tender the letter and the response as exhibits, but Uche objected.

Uche argued that the documents were not relevant to the charges preferred against the defendant.

He noted: “Count one deals with fraudulent forgery of the exemption certificate. There was nowhere his first school leaving certificate was mentioned. Sections 4, 5 7, and 9 of the Evidence Act have settled this.

“Also, these documents were not signed and not dated. An unsigned document is worthless in law. It doesn’t pass the test of admissibility. It also has no name of the officer who signed it.”

“It contains no evidence that any money was paid to get the certified copies of the documents.”

Responding, Egwuaba said the documents were responses to a letter the witness wrote.

He added: “They are original copies of a letter addressed to Moses, a private individual. A letter issued from a public office to an individual cannot be certified. A photocopy can be tendered if the foundation is laid for it.”

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Bunady

JOLOWO BUNALAYEFA PIUS is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for BUNADY NEWSLITE GLOBAL ENTERPRISE (Bunady.com). He started his Blogging/Journalism career at God's Own Wireless Company 2012. He's a graduate of Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba Akoko Ondo State, with a major in History And International Studies. You can contact him for press events, advertisement promotions on Email: contact.bunady@gmail.com

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