Olukayode Ogunbanjo, the Nigerian comedian better known as Pastor Jerosi, claims Baba Ijesha, the embattled actor, dated Damilola ‘Princess’ Adekoya, the foster mother of an alleged rape victim.
Baba Ijesha is facing a six-count charge of indecent treatment of a child, sexual assault, attempted sexual assault by penetration and sexual assault by penetration.
The charges were proffered against him by the Lagos state directorate of public prosecutions (DPP).
During Friday’s proceedings, Dada Awosika (SAN), the defence counsel, notified the court that Ogunbanjo, the fourth defence witness, was the last in the trial.
Ogunbanjo, in his evidence, claimed Baba Ijesha and Princess were in a relationship.
Led in evidence by Kayode Olabiran, a co-defence counsel, Ogunbanjo told the court that he had worked with Baba Ijesha for over 15 years in the entertainment industry.
The witness, an actor and comedian, said Baba Ijesha was his friend and a colleague.
He said Baba Ijesha got in contact with Princess during one of the shows he anchored called ‘Orisun’.
“We were about five people that used to do the show together. On that day, while the show was going on, Princess called on the hotline that she wanted to join our programme,” he said.
“There was a day she called Baba Ijesha that he should come over to her place in Iwaya. I drove the car to her house in Iwaya.
“When we got there, Ijesha prostrated to her mother and the woman said ‘take good care of my daughter’.
“Baba Ijesha at that point revealed to me that he was dating Princess but she was taking the relationship too far.”
Under cross-examination by Yusuf Sule, the prosecution counsel, the witness said he did not have any knowledge of what transpired inside the comedienne’s house.
“On April 19, 2021, I will be correct to say that you were not at No. 13 Wellbow St., Iwaya, as a result, you do not know what transpired inside Princess’s house?” Sule asked.
In response, Ogunbanjo said: “On April 19, 2021, I did not know what transpired inside the house as I was in Aguda in Surulere.
“All I know is what I have said. I was not inside the house. I do not have any knowledge of what happened in the house.”
Oluwatoyin Taiwo, the judge, adjourned the case until June 6 for the adoption of the final written address.
Baba Ijesha was arraigned on June 24, 2021. During the trial, six prosecution witnesses testified against him.
They are Princess, the 14-year-old minor, Olabisi Ajayi-Kayode, a child expert; Aniekan Makanjuola, a medical doctor; Wahab Kareem, the investigating police officer; and Abigail Omane, a policewoman.
The DPP closed its case against the defendant on December 15, 2021, while Baba Ijesha opened his defence on February 17.
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