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  • YAHAYA v. STATE
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  • 2018-05-18
  • SC.154/2015
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YAHAYA v. STATE

ALIYU YAHAYA
V
THE STATE
SUPREME COURT OF NIGERIA


MUSA DATTIJO MUHAMMAD JSC (Presided)
K. M. OLATOKUNBO KEKERE-EKUN JSC
CHIMA CENTUS NWEZE JSC (Read the Lead Judgment)
EJEMBI EKO JSC
PAUL ADAMU GALINJE JSC

SC.154/2015
FRIDAY, 18 MAY 2018

APPEAL - Brief - Need for counsel to prepare with sense of duty and responsibility - Notable pronouncement thereon
APPEAL - Findings of fact by lower courts - Where concurrent
- Attitude of Supreme Court to
COURT - Supreme Court - Attitude of to concurrent finding of facts by lower courts
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Armed robbery -
Ingredients of
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Armed robbery - Offensive weapon used therein - Failure to tender - Whether fatal
to prosecution’s case
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Confession - Nature of as best evidence
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Confession - What
constitutes - Admissibility of - Voluntariness of as condition
precedent to - Section 27 of the Evidence Act considered
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Confessional statement
- Admissibility of - Irrelevance of retraction thereto -
Veracity of - Guiding principles for testing
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Confessional statement
- Admissibility of - Where challenged on grounds of
involuntariness - Proper step court should make
CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE - Conspiracy - Offence
of - What constitutes - How proved
EVIDENCE - Confession - Nature of as best evidence
EVIDENCE - Confession - What constitutes - Admissibility of
- Voluntariness of as condition precedent to - Section 27
of the Evidence Act considered
EVIDENCE - Confessional statement - Admissibility of -
Irrelevance of retraction thereto - Veracity of - Guiding
principles for testing
EVIDENCE - Confessional statement - Admissibility of - Where
challenged on grounds of involuntariness - Proper step
court should make LEGAL PRACTITIONER - Counsel - Brief writing - Need for
counsel to prepare briefs with sense of duty and
responsibility - Notable pronouncement on
NOTABLE PRONOUNCEMENT - On need for counsel to
prepare briefs with sense of duty and responsibility
STATUTE - Evidence Act, section 27 - Confession - What
constitutes - Admissibility of - Voluntariness of as condition
precedent to

Issues:
1. Whether the Court of Appeal’s, affirmation of the trial High Court’s admission of exhibit A1, i.e.
confessional statement made by the appellant to the police was proper.
2. Whether the ingredients of the offences/charges of criminal conspiracy and armed robbery were proved
by the prosecution/respondent.
3. Whether the uncorroborated confessional statement of the appellant is enough to ground a conviction
which said conviction and the subsequent sentence of the appellant was affirmed by the Court of Appeal,
Abuja Division, was proper in law.
4. Whether the Court of Appeal was right in law to have held that it was not always necessary to tender
the weapon used in the commission of armed robbery once there is credible evidence establishing
the guilt of the accused person to the commission of the crime.

Facts:
The appellant was alleged, alongside another accused person to have engaged PW1, a motorcycle operator to carry them
to a destination and they had along the way, snatched his motorcycle and robbed him of a sum of money with the aid of a
knife. They were subsequently arrested and arraigned in the High Court of Kogi State on a 2-count charge of conspiracy and
armed robbery, contrary to sections 97(1) and 298(c) of the Criminal Code respectively. The admissibility of the
confessional statement made by him and tendered at the trial was objected to on grounds that the statement made by him was
recorded on a paper different from the one tendered. The trial court found him guilty and sentenced him accordingly.
Dissatisfied, the appellant appealed to the Court of Appeal and following affirmation of his conviction, he appealed further to
the Supreme Court contending that the lower court erred in affirming his conviction based on a confessional statement that
was uncorroborated.

 

 

Part 968