KADUNA/Nigeria: There was heated debated from the prosecution and defence counsels over admittance of evidence at the ongoing trial of the members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria (IMN) filed by the Federal Government at the Kaduna High Court on Tuesday.
The prosecution while cross examining Prosecution Witness (PW) 43, sought the court’s permission to admit exhibit A70 which is statement of one of the accused persons, Mohammed Ahmed which sad said to have been recorded on December 14, 2015.
Defence counsel, led by Barrister Maxwell Kyon, citing section 83 of the evidence act, he begged the court not to admit the evidence.
“This document ought to be rejected. The witness has not admitted that he took the statement, he said someone else, who has not appeared in court recorded the statement. We appeal sir, that what this witness seeks to do is hearsay evidence. Our position is that this document ought to be thrown out and rejected,” he said.
But the prosecution, led by the Kaduna State Director of Public Prosecution, Bayero Dari, prayed the court to admit the evidence, in view of its relevance to the proceeding.
“Primary thing in admission of a document is its relevance in the matter. By section 4 of the evidence act, and section 7 of same act, the document is admissible,” the prosecution argued.
The presiding judge, Justice Shir Nyoms in his ruling, admitted the document on the ground of its relevance to the case.
“I have listened to arguments of both parties. The essence of documents is to assist courts. Since efforts to reach the person that recorded the statement proved abortive, the statement is hereby admitted as exhibit A70,” he stated.
Meanwhile, defence counsel protested the delays the trial was going through, while praying for the court to admit all statements in bulk instead of treating them individually, which was time consuming.
The prosecution however, insisted on treating each individually, in spite of the judge’s appeal that he would soon go on break to resume next year.
Another drama ensued in court on Tuesday, when the PW43, CSP Ibrahim Abdul requested for a seat to sit on while testifying, explaining that he had been on the road from Port Harcourt to attend the hearing and has not had enough rest on arrival.
Justice Nyoms told him he was a young man and should be able to stand throughout his testimony, but later allowed him to sit, after slighting permission of Barrister Kyon, who said he had no objection with that.
“My Lord I have no objection to that, if he so wishes, he can even sleep,” Kyon said.