Patrick O. Iga V. The State (1981) LLJR-SC

Patrick O. Iga V. The State (1981)

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This is a case in which the appellant deliberately killed a young girl. He had, two years previously, asked for the hand of the girl in marriage but her father said that it was too early and he should wait for some time. There is no reason whatsoever for the appellant to matchet this girl to death. The counsel engaged to argue the appeal said she has nothing to urge in favour of the appellant and with this view the D.P.P. agreed.

I have perused the record of appeal from the High Court to the Federal Court of Appeal and can see nothing useful to urge in his favour. He was rightly convicted by the learned trial Judge and this was confirmed on appeal to the Federal Court of Appeal, Enugu. There is no merit in this appeal and it is accordingly dismissed. The conviction and sentence are hereby confirmed.

C. IDIGBE, J.S.C.: After a review of the facts in this case the learned trial Judge found the appellant guilty of the murder of Lekwachi Nwali Ogo, a girl who refused his request for her hand in marriage. He killed this girl in cold blood and without any provocation. The trial Judge rightly held that the defence of provocation was not available to him and that the defence of insanity was not established. I am of the view that, his appeal lacks merit. I would mention in passing, however, that the Federal Court of Appeal, in my view, should have entertained this appeal instead of striking out the same. I would, for reason earlier stated, dismiss this appeal. The conviction and sentence by the learned trial Judge are hereby affirmed.

A. O. OBASEKI, J.S.C.: Having read the record of proceedings, I agree with both counsel that there is nothing that can be urged usefully in favour of the appellant. This is a murder appeal against the dismissal of the appellant’s appeal to the Federal Court of Appeal.

At the Federal Court of Appeal, the appeal was struck out and both on the ground of the preliminary objection to the Notice of Appeal (which was alleged wrongly headed) and on the submission of appellant’s counsel that he had nothing to urge in favour of the appellant.

The evidence against the appellant to the fact of the merciless matcheting to death of the deceased, a girl he once asked to marry him which offer was turned down, was overwhelming. P.W.2 and P.W.3 with whom the deceased was returning from the market testified that in their presence, the appellant came from behind passed them and matcheted the deceased to death. This evidence was accepted and the appellant’s denial was rejected  justifiably by the trial court and the Federal Court of Appeal.

I therefore see no merit whatever in this appeal and I hereby dismiss it. The conviction and sentence passed by the High Court and affirmed by the Federal Court of Appeal are hereby affirmed.

K. ESO, J.S.C.: This is a dastardly act on the part of the appellant who was matchet happy. The facts have been so well examined by the trial court that I can find no merit in the appeal. The unfortunate deceased declined to marry the appellant. For that reason or whatever other reason, the killing was most unjustified. In the Court of Appeal, nothing could be urged in favour of the appellant as also is the case in this court. The appeal is dismissed and the conviction and sentence passed on the appellant are hereby affirmed.

A. N. ANIAGOLU, J.S.C.: Both counsel are, in my view, right in submitting that there is nothing useful to be urged in favour of the appellant. It was a case of a jilted lover and frustrated marriage proposer who set upon the girl with a matchet and did her to death in the full view of eye witnesses whose evidence was rightly believed by the trial Judge. The Federal Court of Appeal struck out the appeal as not being properly before it. Whether or not it was properly before it, and no issue on that has been taken before us, the fact was that the appeal was entirely unmeritorious. The appeal deserves to be dismissed and is hereby dismissed. The verdict of guilt returned against the appellant is hereby confirmed.

Other Citation: (1981) LCN/2120(SC)

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