A Lagos-based lawyer, Malachy Odo, has narrated a heart-wrenching story of how a young man has spent eight years in prison after being framed by his landlady.
Narrating the tale on social media, Odo lamented that there are several similar cases across the country.
He, however, noted that efforts are ongoing to get the man out of detention.
”I was at Ikoyi prison today and met a guy (Mr B) who was allegedly bundled into a defilement/rape case because he had disagreements with his landlady.
”The landlady’s underage daughter was discovered to be pregnant, and when she was questioned as to who was responsible, she mentioned the name of a tenant who owned up to it.
”However, the landlady, who had issues in the past with Mr B, asked the police to arrest him as he was also a suspect. He has now been in prison for more than 8yrs where he’s awaiting trial. We’ll be taking up the case.”
The issue of prolonged pretrial detention has been a significant challenge in Nigeria’s criminal justice system.
There have been concerns about the high number of individuals detained for extended periods while awaiting trial.
Experts say this can lead to prison overcrowding, violation of human rights, and delays in the justice system.
Odo provided more insight into the case in a subsequent post. He wrote:
”Awaiting trial means that he’s already standing trial before a court, but judgment is yet to be given. No DNA was conducted.
”The main culprit backtracked on his confessional statement in court. We will get him out, as God lives.”