A factional national chairman of the Action Alliance (AA), Mr Kenneth Udeze, was on Tuesday re-arraigned before an Osun state Magistrate Court sitting in the state capital, Osogbo on three count charges.
Also arraigned alongside Udeze were chieftains of the party, Mr James Vernibe and one Ogunmodede Oluwagbemi.
The accused persons were arraigned in suit no, Charge No. MOS 1715/2021 on a three count charges of conspiracy, fraud and forgery. They however all pleaded not guilty to the charges preferred against them. Udeze had earlier been remanded in Ilesa prison custody after he was arraigned before the court.
Udeze who was recently expelled by the leadership of the party, was arrested by operatives of Zone 11 of the Nigerian Police Force, with headquarters in Osogbo. He was alleged to have replaced the name of the duly elected governorship candidate of the party in Osun state with another person during the 2018 governorship election held in the state.
Appearing before the court on Tuesday, Udeze and other defendants were granted provisional bail by Magistrate Adebola Ajanaku who presided over the court. Magistrate Ajanaku also ruled that all the sureties standing in for the accused persons should appear in court on 25th May, 2021 being the next adjourned date.
According to the charge sheet read in court, Udeze and other defendants had in July 2018 conspired to commit felony and fraud, thereby committing an offence contrary to and punishable under section 516 of the criminal code, laws of Osun state.
Also, Udeze was alleged to have fraudulently altered the documents of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and presented the same as original. The offence was said to be contrary to the provisions of section 468 and punishable under section 469 of the criminal code, laws of Osun state.
However, counsel to the defendants, Mr M O Olaniyan urged the court to allow his clients to enjoy the bail already granted them by the court. Though the Police Prosecutor, Mr Olufemi Olanipekun opposed the bail application, the court held that the accused persons be allowed to enjoy the bail already granted them.
Magistrate Ajanaku after granting the accused persons bail, adjourned the case to 25th May, 2021.