A Federal High Court in Lagos on Tuesday, August 25, 2015 ordered the remand of a blogger, Seun Oloketuyi, in prison over alleged malicious publication against the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Fidelity Bank Plc, Nnamdi Okonkwo.
Oloketuyi, who is the organiser of the annual Best of Nollywood Awards, was ordered to be remanded in Ikoyi Prison by Justice Mohammed Yunusa after he was arraigned on a two-count charge by the Special Fraud Unit (SFU) of the Nigerian Police.
The accused had published a news report on his blog, Naija Hottest Gist, where he alleged that Okonkwo had a love relationship with a married lady in the marketing department of the bank.
In the report, Oloketuyi had further alleged that the extra-marital affair between Okonkwo and the said lady simply identified as Justina, resulted in the birth of a baby, and that the affair also destroyed the marriage of the said Justina.
He further alleged that Okonkwo had since sent the affected lady abroad to further her studies.
Okonkwo had petitioned the police, and after investigation, Oloketuyi was charged to court.
According to the charge with reference number FHC/L/346C/15, Oloketuyi in count one was accused of intentionally sending message and other matters by means of computer system or network against Okonkwo, which he knew to be false, for the purpose of causing him annoyance, insult and ill-will.
The offence was said to be contrary to and punishable under Section 24 (1) (b) of the Cybercrime (Prohibition Prevention Etc) Act, 2015.
In count two, Oloketuyi was accused of knowingly publishing defamatory matters on Okonkwo, which he knew to be false, contrary to and punishable under Section 375 of the Criminal Code Act, Cap C38, Laws of the Federation.
The report was published sometime in June 2015 via Oloketuyi’s blog, www.naijahottestgist.com.
After the charges were read to him, Oloketuyi pleaded not guilty, while the prosecutor, Olakanmi Omisope applied that he should be remanded pending trial.
Oloketuyi’s lawyer, A.A Adetunji, however prayed the court to allow him move an oral application for bail on behalf of his client.
Adetunji also said he was not opposed to the trial date being fixed.
But, Justice Yunusa overruled Adetunji, and directed him to file a formal bail application.
The court, thereafter, adjourned the matter to September 1, 2015 and ordered Oloketuyi to be remanded in prison pending trial.