FEDERAL High Court, sitting
inYenagoa, Bayelsa State,
yesterday granted the request
of the prosecution to take the
evidence of Ese Oruru in private
at the resumed pre-trial hearing in
the case involving Yunusa Dahiru,
Ese is the 14-year-old girl,
allegedly abducted by Yunusa in
August 2015 from Bayelsa State
and taken to Kano where she was
forced into a marriage.
Yunusa is standing trial at the
court on five counts of alleged
criminal abduction, illicit sex,
sexual exploitation and unlawful
carnal knowledge of a minor (Ese).
In granting the application,
Justice Aliya Nganjiwa premised
the ruling of the court on
the provisions of Section 36
subsections 4 (a) and (b) of the
1999 Constitution of the Federal
Republic of Nigeria as amended.
Justice Nganjiwa said, “The
evidence of Miss Ese Oruru will be
taken by the court in private and
in chambers, excluding all other
persons other than the prosecution,
the defendant’s counsels, court
clerks and prison officials and
any other persons if the accused
person does not object.”
Justice Nganjiwa said the
defence counsel failed to show
what injury or harm the accused
person would suffer on account of
private hearing for the victim, Ese
He added that it was only the
evidence of Ese that would be
taken in private as other trials
would be done in open court.
Justice Nganjiwa, who
adjourned the matter until June
2, for hearing on the substantive
suit, corrected the impression
that the private hearing would
not jeopardise the hearing of the
substantive suit since other trials
would be conducted in public.
According to the judge, victims,
including those of rape and child
trafficking that fall in that category
can also be protected by the court.
The judge further affirmed that
the mother of the now heavily
pregnant Ese, has been able to
show the court that her daughter
was less than 18 years.
“What will the accused suffer
if the victim‘s evidence is taken
in private? I hereby order that
the evidence should be taken in
private and in the court chambers.
The application hereby succeeds,”
Ngajiwa said in his ruling.
But in his argument, lead
lawyer to the defendant, Mr.
Kayode Olaosebikan, had earlier
maintained that there was …Read More
Source:: Nigerian Pilot