Senator Elisha Abbo has won the assault case instituted against him by the Nigeria Police Force before a Magistrate Court in Zuba, Abuja
This is despite a viral video showing him assaulting a woman, Osimibibra Warmate; and a televised press conference in which he apologised to the victim.
The Magistrate, Abdullahi Ilelah, said the police failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the lawmaker assaulted Warmate on May 11, 2019.
The two witnesses that testified against Abbo were Warmate – who was the nominal complainant – and a police officer, ASP Mary Daniel, who investigated the matter.
The court said the video of the press conference showing Senator Abbo apologising was not tantamount to an admission of guilt as it wasn’t a confessional statement.
Ilelah said the testimony of the victim was “so weak because the allegation has not been substantiated in any material particular.”
The court said the police did not do a proper investigation as it relied solely on the statement of the victim.
The magistrate stated, “The IPO (Investigating Police Officer) did not investigate this case at all or she just charged the defendant to court via the F.I.R (First Information Report) without due care and attention.
In fact, she has succeeded in creating a doubt in the mind of this court during cross-examination and the Supreme Court held that where there is a doubt in a criminal trial, such doubt should be resolved in favour of the defendant.”
He said the court would rely on the law and not logic or media reports because he who alleges must prove. “The defendant is hereby discharged under Section 303(3)(c) and (d) of the ACJA 2015,” the magistrate said.