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Erisco Tomato: Chioma remanded in prison despite having miscarriage

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Chioma Okoli who got into trouble for writing a review of a tomato paste she bought on Facebook has been remanded in prison custody.

She was remanded following her arraignment at the Federal High Court in Abuja before Hon. Justice Peter Lifu on Tuesday, May 28, 2024.

Okoli pleaded not guilty to the two counts of conspiracy and cyberstalking preferred against her.

She was remanded in Suleja Correctional Centre till Friday 31st May, 2024 for ruling on her bail application.

Human rights lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, along with S. M Oyeghe appeared for Chioma while Abdulrashid Isyaku-Sidi appeared for the Inspector General of Police.

Okoli’s lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, told the court that his client suffered a miscarriage in the course of the case and eventually lost her baby.

It would be recalled that the CEO of Erisco Foods, Eric Omeofia, had alleged in 2023 that a negative product review by a customer, Chioma Edoka Okoli, negatively impacted his business when she claimed that the Nagiko Tomota Mix she bought had too much sugar.

Okoli was eventually arrested by the police in September 2023 with her lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, raising alarm that the fundamental right of his client was being breached by the police and Omeofia.

Okoli is standing trial on charges bordering on conspiracy and cyberstalking.

The counts read, “That you Chioma Edoka Okoli also known as Chioma Egodi Jnr, Happiness Obas now at large And Don Kashking now at large ‘m’ of on or about sometime in the month of September 2023 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court, conspired among yourself and intentionally sent a message by means of computer and social media network such as Facebook, by using your Facebook handle by name Chioma Egodi Jnr, with the intention of instigating people against Erisco Foods Limited, knowing the said information to be false and with intent to cause annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, ill will, or needless anxiety to Erisco Foods Limited, the management, and members of the family, thereby committed an offence contrary and punishable under Section 27 (1) (B) Cyber Crime Prohibition Act.

“That you Chioma Edoka Okoli also known as Chioma Egodi Jnr, Happiness Obas now at large and Don Kashking now at large ‘m’ of on or about sometime in the month of September, 2023 within the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court intentionally send a message by means of computer and social media network such as Facebook, by using your Facebook handle by name Chioma Egodi Jnr, with the intention of instigating Erisco Foods Limited, knowing the said information to be false and with intent to cause annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, ill will or needless anxiety to Erisco Foods Limited, the management, and members of the family, and thereby committed an offence contrary and punishable under Section 24 (1) (B) Cyber Crime Prohibition Act”.

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