A Magistrate Court in Port Harcourt on Tuesday granted bail to
Samuel Ugorji and Samuel Buhari, both pilots with Caverton
Helicopters who were accused of contravening the Executive Order
of the Rivers State Governor issued to check the spread of
coronavirus in the State.
The Magistrate Court also granted bail to 10 passengers of Caverton
Helicopters who were flown into Rivers State by the two pilots.
Chief Magistrate D.D . Ihua-Maduenyi granted the two pilots bail
after hearing the bail application by their counsel, stated that they
must present a surety who must be a management staff of
The Court ruled that the surety must own a landed property in Port
Harcourt and the surety must ensure that the two pilots attend
trial. He added that the surety will sign a bail bond of N1million
each for the two pilots.
Earlier, the court granted a motion abridging the time for the bail
application to be filed following a motion moved by Caverton
Helicopters. It deemed the bail application as properly filed.
He adjourned the matter to May 19, 2020 for trial.
Counsel to the Caverton Pilots, Nwokedi Ibe moved a bail
application seeking the court to grant the two pilots bail.
His bail application dated April 8, 2020, but filed on April 9, 2020
was supported by a 28-paragraph affidavit.
Attorney-General of Rivers State, Professor Zaccheus Adangor who
appeared for the State did not oppose the bail application,
however, urged the Court to set out bail conditions to ensure that
the pilots attend their trial.
The 10 passengers who were granted bail include:
- NWOGU CHIBUNA ‘M’, AGED 39YRS
- PETER MICHAEL ‘M’AGED 43YRS
- AJAGBA IHEAYNI ‘M’ AGED 35YRS
- EKPEREWECHI OGUGUO ‘M’AGED 43YRS
- NSIKAN PIUS ‘M’ AGED 38YRS
- ABANOBI CHINOSO ‘M’AGED 27YRS
- UDOH HAGAN ‘M’AGED 28YRS
- OKACHUKWU CHUKS ‘M’ AGED 41YRS
- GODDY CHUKWU ‘M’AGED 42YRS
- OOMERURIKE CHIJIOKE ‘M’AGED 43YRS
For the passengers, the Court ruled that they should present two
sureties who must be management staff of Carveton Helicopters .
They sureties are to sign bail bond of N500,000 for each of the
passengers. They are to undertake to bring the accused persons
They were arrested at the Air Force Base , Port Harcourt after the
Rivers State Police Command received intelligence on their illegal
flight into the State.
Addressing journalists, Counsel to Carveton Helicopters, Nwokedi
Ibe said that the Basic lesson in the who interaction is that there
must be mutual respect between the Federal and State
He said: “I want to use this medium to say there is need for mutual
respect between the Federal Government and State Governments.
The defendants have been granted bail. That is the essence of what
happened in Court.”
Attorney-General of Rivers State, Professor Zaccheus Adangor said
that it must be noted that Rivers State Government is not interested
in the persecution of the defendants, hence it did not oppose the
bail application. He said that the State Government is only
interested in prosecuting the defendants in line with the law.
He said that the defendants will be released as soon as they perfect
It will be recalled that on April 7, a Port Harcourt Chief Magistrate
Court remanded two pilots of Carveton Helicopters, Samuel Ugorji
and Samuel Buhari in prison custody, for allegedly disobeying the
Executive Order issued by the Rivers State Governor aimed at
checking the spread of coronavirus in the state.
The Court presided over by Chief Magistrate D.D . Ihua-Maduenyi
remanded the two pilots at the Delta Hotels , Old GRA, Port
Harcourt after the Attorney-General of Rivers State, Professor
Zaccheus Adangor applied for that order.
The Pilots who were arrested by the Rivers State Police Command
were arraigned by the State Police Command via charge