The Rivers State Police Command has arraigned a professor at the Rivers State University, Port Harcourt, David Ogbonna, before a Chief Magistrate Court, over allegations of unlawful and indecent sexual assault of a 20-year-old female undergraduate of the campus on May 16, 2022.
Prof Ogbonna was arraigned before Chief Magistrate Menenen Poromon on Tuesday.
The charge sheet, PNC/1037C/2022, cited by our correspondent read, “You Professor David Ogbonna on May 16, 2022, on Rivers State University campus, Oruwokwo in Obio/Akpor Magisterial District, but triable in Port Harcourt Magisterial District did unlawfully and indecently assault a female aged twenty years by inserting your penis into her vagina, thereby committed an offence punishable under section 360 of the criminal code CAP 37 Vol. 11 of laws of Rivers State, Nigeria, 1999.”
The accused (Prof Ogbonna) pleaded not guilty to the charges.
The lead defence lawyer, O. C. Higher King, urged the court to grant the defendant bail on self-recognisance, considering his status in the society.
But, Emi George, lead lawyer holding a watching brief for the International Federation of Women Lawyers, Rivers State branch, urged the court not to grant the accused bail in view of alleged ‘threat to the life of the victim.’
Chief Magistrate Poromon after listening to arguments of both lawyers, granted the accused bail in the sum of N2 million, and that the surety must be residing in the magisterial district.
The case was subsequently adjourned to July 20, 2022.