It was with utter dismay that I heard the news of the striking out of two counts of acts of terrorism proffered against AMINU OGWUCHE, alleged mastermind of the April 14, 2014 NYANYA Motor Park bombing that claimed the lives of about Seventy-five people, for LACK OF “DILIGENT PROSECUTION”.
The Prosecutors for the Police and the Department of State Security couldn’t even agree on who amongst them should prosecute the case initially, when they found that they couldn’t go at it together. I can only imagine the kind of confusion they must’ve caused the presiding judge at the Federal High Court in Abuja, where they would’ve worked at cross purposes before arriving at the compromise position that led them this far, without a fruitful resolution of a case that looked simple enough from the onset with the much touted “evidences” at their disposal for which they were able to convince Interpol to help them locate the suspect, and even further to aid his repatriation from Sudan (a country frequently cropping up in intelligence circles, as one of the training bases for Nigerian jihadists).
This isn’t the first time, prosecution counsels will be bungling high profile cases in Nigeria in recent times, infact these lazy lawyers have bungled just about every case including those were they faced defence lawyers just fresh from law school. The few times cases were adequately dispensed with in Nigeria in recent times were mostly those where independent lawyers were contracted by anti-corruption agencies like the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC.
If notorious armed robbers like Oyenusi and Anini had been charged to face the courts today, they would’ve walked free inspite of incontrovertible evidence, and not died by firing squad after the prosecution in their cases proved their guilt beyond reasonable doubt in the 70’s and 80’s respectively. Those were the days when prosecutors knew their onions, not the ones that now make the law that’s already an ASS, an idiot!
Not only does the laziness of the prosecutors astound me, the shoddy work of the investigating authorities is even worse. Many a time, they will begin investigations after arresting someone they call a prime suspect, rather than concluding investigations before rounding up with questions simply to confirm what they already know. That isn’t the case with these lazier ones, they procure confessions under duress while torturing their victims (tales of which even you would confess to anything, even other crimes that NEVER happened should you find yourself in such a situation); confessions that cannot stand the test in court because of the manner in which they were obtained.
The DEFENCE LAWYERS are now having a field day, not because of their exceptional brilliance, but rather due to the laziness and tactlessness of the prosecutors, prompting one of my friends to wish that he’d have the opportunity to kill his enemy first (should push come to shove) before the other could get to him, seeing that he wouldn’t get justice the way the Nigerian justice system is presently structured, especially with the weak prosecution and easily compromised judges (a matter for another day).
It is easy for one to premise the rising cases of assassinations, political and otherwise, even the prevalence of Mob Actions and JUNGLE JUSTICE to a weak justice system, that have led many citizens to consider SELF HELP in seeking redress to wrongs done them.
I know that the judge may have considered that the case had some merits but for the stupidity of the prosecuting counsels, in ordering that the accused remain in custody of the Department of State Security, while he may now not be restricted from seeing his counsel and close family members, and hopefully the prosecuting authorities will consider it trite to take another go at prosecuting this case effectively and efficiently to its logical conclusion.
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