The Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos has granted post-conviction bail to the head of Genesis Parish of the Celestial Church of Christ, Alagbado, Lagos Prophet Israel Ogundipe.
Justice Olabisi Akinlade of the Lagos State High Court had on November 18, 2020 sentenced Ogundipe to one-year imprisonment for converting a woman’s property to his personal use, and stealing.
At the time, the televangelist, in a motion on notice for bail pending appeal, asked the court for an order admitting him to unconditional bail, pending the hearing and determination of the appeal of his sentence.
In a 16-paragraph affidavit sworn by his counsel Olanrewaju Ajanaku which is in support of his bail application, the televangelist said he was suffering from diabetes.
He noted that he could not follow a strict diet and the constant specialised medical attention in custody and this has taken a toll on his health.
He also noted that prior to his incarceration, he was suffering from hypertension, peptic ulcer and unending malaria which had worsened his health challenges since his November 18 conviction.
But Justice Akinlade dismissed the application which was brought pursuant to Section 6(6) of the Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 as amended, paving way for the convict to continue serving his sentence at the Kirikiri Correctional Centre.
However, delivering the Appeal Court’s lead ruling Justice Abudullhai Muhammed Bayero held that “there are criteria for granting a convict bail. These include that the applicant must be a first-time offender or having serious health conditions.
“The applicant seeking bail pending appeal before the court is a first-time offender and he has also shown to court that he is having hypertension, peptic ulcer, unending malaria and diabetes, which are serious health conditions.
“He is consequently admitted to bail in the sum of N2 million with two sureties in like sum. The sureties must have landed property on Lagos Island with original Certificates of Occupancy from the Lagos State Government.
“The sureties are to deposit these documents along with their passport photographs with the Deputy Registrar of the Court of Appeal.”
Ogundipe had in March celebrated his 47th birthday in prison.