An Igbosere Magistrates’ Court, Lagos, on Thursday, granted five pupils of Ireti Grammar School, Falomo, Lagos N500,000 bail following their arraignment for alleged sexual assault.
Two of the boys, 17, and three of them, 16 year olds, were arraigned before Mr. Patrick Adekomaya, by the Lagos State Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP).
The arraignment was closed to the public, but a representative of the Office of the Public Defender watched brief for the complainants.
The defendants are standing trial on a four-count charge of alleged conspiracy, unlawful assembly, gross indecency by forcing themselves on a female pupil and unlawfully and willfully damaging her school skirt valued at N1,150.
According to Prosecuting Counsel, Mr. Olaitan Soetan, the offences contravened and were punishable under Section 35, 44(1) &(4), 134 and 412 of the Criminal Code, Laws of Lagos State, 2015.
The defendants pleaded not guilty.
Magistrate Adekomaya granted them N500,000 bail with two sureties in the like sum, who must also be civil servants.
Adekomaya directed that the case file be forwarded to the DPP’s office for advice and adjourned till June 14.
According to the story shared by a Facebook user, Michale Matthew, female students of Falomo Senior High School, who had just finished their final exam were targeted by male students of Ireti Grammar School, South West Ikoyi, who had also taken their last paper on Wednesday.
Matthew gave a graphic account of how some of the students pinned down their struggling victims, as their colleagues herded around, cheering the assailants.
The eyewitness, who apparently works in the neighbourhood, was closing for work that day when she chanced on the scene.
She said, “Their shouting overpowers any other sound and looking closely, I see the most unreal thing. It is actually a boy trying to force himself on a girl with his trousers partly down and the boys are cheering him on.
“People are looking and some persons, the security guards in the office near us are recording it. I open my car in disbelief and shout at the boys to break it up while shouting at my security and the second driver to assist me.
“I walk towards them and as I make my way towards them, I see another group and this time they have cornered one of the girls who fell while running from them.
“I see her kicked down, she bravely pushes herself up and another guy tries to clear her legs and she lunges at him and then a guy takes a pair of scissors in his hands and with one swoop tears her skirt from the bottom and also a part of the black spandex shorts she has on underneath.
“All this happens really in a few minutes and he proceeds to push himself into her through her back. His trousers is open too and another one tries to do same from the front. As this is going on, the crowd of boys are wild with frenzy, cheering the two boys on, while grabbing at her hair, breasts and she is fighting for dear life.
“This is not before I get the names of the boys as George and Abiodun as the main perpetrators, they are final year students of Ireti Grammar School SW Ikoyi.”
She said after intervening and forcing some of the boys to flee, she personally escorted some of the girls who clung to him for safety to the motor parks to board vehicles to their various homes.
On Thursday, policemen from the Adeniji Adele Police Division, the Social Welfare Department of the Lagos State Ministry of Youths, Sports and Social Development and officials from the deputy governor’s office stormed the schools to trace some of the boys who could be identified as the perpetrators.