Student Village Academy Forums VILLAGE POLITICS AND CURRENT AFFAIRS Chief Judge Frees Convicted Politcians Just After 2 months Of 7 year Jail Term

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    • #52848
      justseyi
      Keymaster

      Chief Judge Controversially Frees Convicted Politician After Two Months of Seven-Year Jail Term

      Chuma Nzeribe, a politician convicted of impersonation and other crimes, has been released from prison just two months into his seven-year sentence. The Chief Judge of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, Husseini Baba-Yusuf, made the decision based on the convict’s health conditions during a prison decongestion exercise. This move has sparked debates among lawyers, questioning the Chief Judge’s authority to free a prisoner whose bail application is still pending in court.

      Mr. Nzeribe had been on the run for a year before being arrested and sentenced in March this year. Despite being sentenced, he filed an appeal and applied for post-conviction bail. However, before the bail application could be heard, the Chief Judge ordered his release on medical grounds. This decision has raised concerns regarding the Chief Judge’s discretionary powers and whether it aligns with the conditions outlined for prisoner release.

      While the Chief Judge’s office has not confirmed the development, the Nigerian Correctional Service has confirmed Mr. Nzeribe’s release based on the Chief Judge’s order. However, constitutional lawyers, including Femi Falana, argue that Chief Judges do not possess the power to pardon convicts. They reference the Criminal Justice (Release From Custody) (Special Provisions) Act, which outlines specific conditions under which a Chief Judge may release a detainee.

      Mr. Nzeribe’s release highlights the special treatment politically exposed persons (PEPs) often receive within Nigeria’s criminal justice system. Instances where high-profile suspects or convicts receive preferential treatment raise concerns about the system’s fairness and integrity. This case adds to the growing list of politically influential individuals benefiting from unusual legal tactics or presidential pardons.

      The trial judge in Mr. Nzeribe’s case was reportedly unaware of his release, as the Chief Judge made the decision without the court’s knowledge. Currently, the trial judge is serving on an election petition tribunal, and there are pending motions for bail that have yet to be heard. Furthermore, the trial court’s jurisdiction to entertain Mr. Nzeribe’s bail request is disputed due to an ongoing appeal before the Court of Appeal.

      In 2013, Mr. Nzeribe was accused of possession and use of a document with false pretenses, forging official papers, and committing an offense related to advance fee fraud. The court found him guilty beyond a reasonable doubt and ordered the forfeiture of the land acquired through the fraudulent documents.

      This case raises questions about the balance of power and due process within the Nigerian judicial system, particularly when dealing with influential individuals.

      • This topic was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by justseyi.
    • #52850
      Esther Amadi
      Moderator

      Nothing new, just Nigerians being Nigerian.

       

      Gutter, Judiciary is completely rotten.

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