Case against Jelili adjourned again



Trial in the case involving performance artist, Jelili Atiku, was yesterday again adjourned till April 25 for further hearing. Atiku was accused of causing public disturbance with his performance of Aragamago, designed to eradicate domestic terrorism on January 14, 2016 at Ejigbo community.

The trial is being held at Ejigbo Magistrate’s Court in Lagos. The Magistrate, Mrs. Adeyemi, adjourned the case because the complainant, Chief Fatai Ibraheem, who represented the Oba of Ejigbo, excused himself from trial on grounds of ill health.

However, before the adjournment, counsel to Atiku, Mr. Yomi Animashaun, raised objection to the admissibility of a particular photograph as evidence, saying instead of one photograph as earlier shown at the first trial, two photographs were now being admitted. It was later agreed after heated arguments that the said photographs be admitted as evidence pending the determination of their weightiness as evidence by the magistrate.

The case against Atiku has generated a lot of international attention. Even the American Bar Association sent Mr. Eze Eluchie to witness the trial. Also in court was Dorothea Sero, a German artist, who had come to observe the outcome of the case, but both were disappointed at the adjournment.

Atiku’s counsel, Animashaun, said he expected a long trial, as there were too many cases pending in court, which also suffered similar adjournment.

Other persons joined in the case include his co-performers – Monsuru Saula, Hassan Nosiru, Ashimiu Muyideen, and Jamiu Sanni, with two other women who are said to be spectators during the performance.

Atiku, who recently received the Netherlands’ Prince Claus grant, performed Aragamago that focused on eradicating domestic terrorism in Ejigbo. For some years now, Atiku has consistently used art as a medium of protest to raise awareness and to bring about change around the world.

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