In Lagos Death row convict freed from jail after 11 years

The convict, Ganiyu Wahab, who was reportedly arraigned for murder and sentenced to death at the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja on July 2, 2007, has now been discharged and acquitted.

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The Court of Appeal sitting in Lagos has reportedly freed a death row convict after spending 11 years in prison.

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The convict, Ganiyu Wahab, who was reportedly arraigned for murder and sentenced to death at the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja on July 2, 2007, has now been discharged and acquitted.

The Nation reports that Wahab was accused of stabbing one, Kolawole Lateef Alaran, to death with a broken bottle in the Agboyi area of Lagos on January 23, 2005.

Wahab was reportedly discharged following an appeal by the Legal Defence and Assistance Project (LEDAP), against his conviction.

The reports reveal that the judgement which was delivered by a panel led by Justice Abimbola Osarugue Obaseki- Adejumo on Wednesday, July 13, overturned his conviction and death sentence.

The appeal was based on the fact that Wahab's conviction had been made on the evidence of a lone witness, whose confessional statements were reportedly erroneous.

Wahab's lawyer, Chino Obiagwu said:

“This is another opportunity to reiterate our calls for an in-depth re-evaluation and urgent overhauling of our criminal justice system, especially as it relates to the use of capital punishment. We cannot continue to sentence innocent persons to death, only for the appeal court to upturn the judgment after a decade or more.”

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The court held that the prosecution had failed to prove its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

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