- The former Deputy Governor of Imo State has been released from Owerri Correctional Centre after nine days in custody.
- The release was ordered by a Federal High Court in the FCT, according to a statement by his spokesperson, Walter Duru.
- Irona was arraigned on three charges of treason, conspiracy, and theft of government property.
Gerald Irona, the immediate past Deputy Governor of Imo State, has regained his freedom after nine days at the Owerri Correctional Centre.
According to Punch Newspaper, Walter Duru, his spokesperson, disclosed his freedom on Friday via text message.
He noted that a Federal High Court in the FCT had ordered his freedom .
The backstory: Irona was arraigned last week Thursday by the state police command on three count charges bordering on Treason.
Following his arraignment, the magistrate ordered that he be remanded in the state correctional facility as she did not have the jurisdiction to hear the matter.
The case was subsequently transferred to the state high court in Owerri, the imo state capital.
The case was assigned to Justice S.I. Opara of the Imo State High Court in Owerri.
Though Irona’s lawyer had prayed the judge to grant his client bail on self recognition, the prosecution counsel objected saying the application was filed late on Monday.
Subsequently, The judge refused to admit Irona to bail and adjourned the matter till March 22 to enable the prosecutors, file their counter-bail affidavit.
Charges against Irona: Nairametrics reported that Irona was arrested at about 10:15 am on Wednesday March 8, at his residence in Owerri, the Imo State capital. The charges against him reads thus:
- “That you Hon Gerald Irona sometime in January 2020, at Owerri in the Owerri magistrate district, did conspired with others now at large, to commit felony to wit: treason and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 37(2) of the criminal code, cap c 38, law of the federation of Nigeria, 2004, as applicable in Imo State.
- “That you Hon Gerald Irona sometime in January 2020, at Owerri in the Owerri magistrate district, did make several utterances to the effect that you will make Imo state ungovernable and immediately afterwards hoodlums levied several attacks on Imo state with intent to intimidate or overawe the governor of Imo state and thereby committed an offence punishable under section 37 of the criminal code, cap, c 38, law of the federation of Nigeria, 2004, as applicable in Imo State.
- “That you Hon Gerald Irona on the 15th day of January, 2020, at Owerri in the Owerri magistrate district, do converted to your own use two land cruiser jeep ( V8 and v6) and one Toyota Hilux vehicle valued four hundred and Ninety three million naira property of Imo state government thereby committed an offence punishable under section 390 ( 9) of the criminal code, cap c 38, laws of the federation of Nigeria, 2004, as applicable in Imo State.”