Ese Oruru’s To Give Evidence Behind Closed Doors

Ese Oruru
Ese Oruru

A Federal High Court sitting in Yenagoa on Thursday granted the application that the testimony of the abducted teenager, Ese Oruru, be taken in private in the case filed against her abductor, Yinua Dahiru.

Presiding judge, Justice Aliya Nganjiwa, said that he was allowing the application filed by prosecution counsel, Keneth Dike, that the teenager’s evidence be taken in private after careful consideration.

“I premise the ruling of the court on the provision of section 36 subsections 4 (a) and (b) of the 1999 constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as amended.

“The evidence of Ese Oruru will be taken in private and in chambers, excluding all other persons other than the prosecution, the accused defendant counsels, top prison officials and any other if the accused person does not object,” the judge said.

Justice Nganjiwa, who observed that the defence counsel had not convinced the court that Dahiru would suffer any injury if Oruru’s testimony is taken in private, clarified that only her evidence would be taken in chambers and that the main trial would be in the open court.

“It is only the evidence of the victim, Ese Oruru that will be taken in private while the main trial will be in open court; the defence counsel have failed to show what injury or harm the accused person, Yanusa Dahiru will suffer on account of private hearing,” he said.

At the court’s last sitting on April 18, sitting, Dike, filed an application that the court should allow evidence to be taken from Oruru in private, a proposal that was quickly opposed by defense counsel.

Dike said the application was necessary to protect the young girl’s image.

“For the interest justice, we must protect her image and future; we are seeking the leave of the court to take the evidence of the victim in private excluding every other persons except the parties and the counsel,” he said.

However, Kayode Olaosebikan opposed the application, saying that there was no merit in taking the victim’s evidence in private.

He argued that Oruru’s pictures were already on the Internet, print and electronic media and is already well known by the public, adding that it was pointless at this stage to hide her identity.

At the end of Thursday’s sitting, Dike applauded the court’s decision on his application, saying it was in the interest of justice and fair trial.

“I am happy the way the case is going; on today’s pre-trial hearing, our application has been granted and I believe justice is prevailing. We are sitting for the constitutional right of the victim, Ese Oruru, and we want fair trial for the interest of justice,” he said.



    Dahiru’s counsel, Olaosebikan, said that the ruling was not unusual. He lamented that the accused person’s legal team were having difficulty meeting the bail conditions given by the court, disclosing that he had filed a motion to the court to review them.

    “The court is asking us to bring sureties, who are residents in Yenagoa; so, it has been very difficult and challenging to us to bail Yanusa,” he said.

    Dahiru is facing a five count charge of criminal abduction, illicit sex, sexual exploitation and unlawful carnal knowledge of a minor.

    Justice Nganjiwa adjourned hearing to June 2 for hearing on the substantive suit.


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