No fewer than 53 persons including young students arrested during a gay marriage were arraigned before a Magistrates’ Court in Chediya, Zaria on Wednesday, April 19.
The prosecutor, Mannir Nasir, alleged that the accused were arrested on Saturday, April 15 at Zaria Motel where the wedding between one Faruk and Sanusi was taking place.
They were being charged with conspiracy, unlawful assembly and belonging to a gang of unlawful offences, which contravened Sections 97, 100 and 197(a) of Criminal Procedure Code, CPC.
“On April 15, 2017 at about 2100 hours a team of policemen led by DSP Muhammad Lawal-Mashi arrested and brought to police station 53 persons.
“The arrested persons included; Jibril Abdullahi, Sagir Abubakar, Anas Mohammed, Mustapha Ababukar, Musa Ibrahim and Suleiman Usman among others, all of various addresses.”
“Information reached the police that these group of persons conspired to celebrate a gay marriage at Zaria Motel between one Faruk and Sanusi both at large,” the prosecutor said.
The accused persons pleaded not guilty to the charges, and their counsel, Yunusa Umar, asked the court to release them on bail in line with sections 35 (4) and 36 (5) of the Constitution.
Umar lamented that the accused persons were detained in police custody for more than 24 hours contrary to the provisions of the constitution.
The Chief Magistrate, Auwal Musa-Aliyu, granted bail to the accused persons in the sum of $1,200 each, with one surety each in the like sum, who must be a blood relation to the accused.
He ordered that each surety must present two passport size photographs, valid identity card, bank account number, letter of credence from a traditional ruler, a 2015 utility bill and a valid GSM numbers.
The Chief Magistrate adjoined the case until May 8, for further hearing.