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#EndSARS protester who gave birth in prison granted N10m bail after over eight months in detention

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An Ondo State High Court has granted bail in the sum of N10 million and a surety in like sum to an 18-year-old #EndSARS protester Kemisola Ogunniyi.

Before she was granted bail on Tuesday, Kemisola had been remanded in the custody of Surulere Prison, in Ondo West Local Government Area of Ondo State, for over eight months.

She gave birth in prison on June 16.

Alongside three others, Kemisola was accused of razing the All Progressives Congress (APC) secretariat in Akure during the #EnsSARS protest in October 2020.

Kemisola and the other protesters were charged with arson, riotous assembly, stealing and malicious damage.

Justice Omolara Adejumo granted Kemisola bail while ruling on the bail application on Tuesday.

Adejumo ordered that Kemisola be released from prison to attend the naming ceremony of her child. She is to return to prison after the naming ceremony to fulfil her bail conditions.

Briefing journalists after the ruling, counsel to the defendants Tope Temokun said Kemisola would be released following the court order.

Temokun explained that bail applications filed by the other accused protesters was also before the court but had not been heard.

He noted that another protester Ayodele Bukunmi, who was arrested alongside Ogunniyi, lost her two-month pregnancy while in prison custody.

In October 2020, Nigerians across many states protested against extrajudicial killings by notorious operatives of the defunct Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) of the Nigeria Police Force.

The protests, which lasted for many days, were eventually hijacked by hoodlums who vandalised government and private facilities.

Kemisola’s mother says daughter innocent.

Felicia Ogunniyi, Kemisola’s mother, had insisted that her daughter did not commit any of the charges levelled against her by the security operatives.

During an interview with BBC Yoruba, Felicia said she and her daughter were at home as youths engaged in the #EndSARS protests.

“My daughter is not guilty of the allegation levelled against her, she only went out to help me seek for money to buy drugs,” Felicia said.

Kemisola Ogunniyi gives birth in prison

She explained that her sickness made her daughter leave home to seek money from a friend to purchase drugs for her.

“We have been unhappy since her incarceration, I do not sleep. I was not aware she was pregnant, it was after she got there that I was informed that she was pregnant,” she stated.

Felicia further stated that after her daughter’s arrest in 2020, the family sold all their properties to secure her release but the efforts did not yield results.

When The ICIR contacted the spokesperson for the Ondo State Police Command Tee-Leo Ikoro to explain the circumstances surrounding Kemisola’s arrest, he did not respond to calls and text messages sent to him.

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