According to SaharaReporters, the Nigerian Correctional Service, Ondo State Command has reacted to the case of Kemisola Ogunniyi, a woman who had a child in prison following her arrest by the police 8 months ago for allegedly participating in EndSARS protest.
A statement by the command through its public relations officer/legal officer, Babatunde Ogundare, said Ogunniyi was remanded on the orders of the court.
It said, “The lady in question was remanded in the female custodial facility by a court of competent jurisdiction on the 24th November, 2020, for conspiracy, arson, riotous assembly, stealing, and malicious damage and the matter was subsequently adjourned to 8th December, 2020 for hearing, and further adjourned to 9th March, 2021.
“She was 2 months pregnant when she was remanded in the facility and all necessary medical cares and legal attention needed was accorded accordingly within the ambit of the operational orders of the service. Her families and legal representatives were given access to visit her as well.
“She fell into labour on Tuesday 15th June, 2021, and she was immediately moved to the Ondo state basic health centre for delivery and she delivered her baby on the 16th June, 2021 around noon.
“She was hale and hearty with the baby and subsequently discharged and was taken back to the facility for further care.
“It is very expedient for the general public to know that the Nigeria Correctional Service will not unlawfully hold down any inmate without the order of court and the need to disregard the viral pictures and deceitful information emanating in the social media in other to discredit the service.
“While assuring the public of the commitment of officers and men of the command to the care and support for Inmates in custody, the state controller Barr. Suanu D Kinane wishes to state that the service is community friendly and will not act contrary to the operational orders and constitution of the federal republic of Nigeria.
“She is hale and hearty with her baby in the facility pending the determination of her case before the court of competent jurisdiction.”
Ogunniyi was arrested in Akure and has been imprisoned since October 24, 2020, while going to a pharmacy to buy drugs for her mother.
She was arrested by the police who said she was one of the participants of the #EndSARS protest in the state.
The police claimed she was one of the #EndSARS protesters who burnt the office of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in the state last year, about eight months ago.
Sowore and other well-meaning individuals had called for the immediate release of the young lady, who was arrested in Akure and has been imprisoned since October 24, 2020, while going to a pharmacy to buy drugs for her mother.
However, in a recent post on his Twitter handle on Thursday, Sowore stated that the Ondo State government has insisted on holding the baby and mother in custody.
He said the lawyer of the lady had filed an application for bail on request of the government, but a date had yet to be given for hearing.
The human rights activist also noted that the prison guard who accompanied Ogunniyi to the hospital was being accused of taking her photos, those of the baby and releasing the same to the public.
He wrote, “UPDATE on #FreeKemisola: Since revealing the horrible/inhuman condition to which #Endsars Kemisola Ogunniyi and newborn baby has been subjected since yesterday many public-spirited individuals and groups have tried to get @RotimiAkeredolu to free her unconditionally but as it is typical of power-drunk wicked politicians, Ondo state government is insisting on holding Kemisola and the baby in state custody.
“They are requesting that her lawyer file an application for bail, which is already done but they’ve refused to give a date for hearing and stalling all day.
”I had a chat with the Attorney Gen of the state, Charles Titiloye (formerly a Human Rights lawyer), he insists that his office will not end the case but will be willing to work on granting bail. He claims there are nominal complainants that won’t let him file a nolle. I was shocked!
”Meanwhile, they’ve now begun to persecute the prison guard who accompanied her to the hospital accusing the fellow of taking her photos, those of the baby and releasing same to the public. These people are heartless. We insist on the unconditional release of Kemisola and three others.”