By; MOHAMMED KAWU, Bauchi
Six suspected rapists in Bauchi State have been sentenced by a High Court and an Appellate Court each to life imprisonment having found them guilty of the offence
Bauchi State Ministry of Justice which secured the conviction on rape cases, disclosed that other 18 cases are pending in Courts.
The State Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary in the Justice Ministry, Aliyu Bin Idris (Esq) dropped the hint on the conviction of the suspects in Bauchi over the weekend.
Barrister Aliyu Bin Idris was speaking as a participant at a capacity training for key stakeholders in the fight against Sexual and Gender Based Violence (SGBV) held at Hazibal, Bauchi.
He gave a breakdown of the convictions with three by a Court of Appeal which affirmed the judgement in the case of Shamsuddeen Adamu a.k.a Duna Versus State, case file No. CA/J/76/C/2020 convicted for rape and sentenced to lifetime imprisonment.
The other two from the Appellate Court are Abbas Usman a.k.a Gero Versus State, pile No. CA/J/75/C/ 2020
convicted for the offence of rape and sentenced to life imprisonment, and Al-Amin Yunusa a.k.a Maka V. State (CA/18/C/2020) convicted for the offence of rape and also sentenced to life imprisonment.
Others who the Ministry secured their conviction through a High Court of Justice included Salisu Haruna V. State (BA/45/C/2018 convicted for attempted rape and act of gross indecency
Also convicted are AbdulKarim Sani V. State (BA/51/C/2018) attempted rape and act of gross indecency, and Shamsuddeen Adamu V. State (BA/23/C/2018) convicted for rape, sentenced to lifetime imprisonments.
Barrister Idris explained that 18 rape cases are now pending/ongoing in Court, while 2 more Monday forwarded to the Ministry 2020 for legal advice.
He commended the organizers of the training for their foresight in bringing together key stakeholders focused on SGBV, stressing “The menace of rape and other gender based violence should be of concern for all”.
The Solicitor-General expressed delight that Bauchi state government under the present administration has created the enabling environment for the prosecution of offenders.
“The onus now lays with the community, where such crimes are perpetrated and the police to help us in ensuring that state secure convictions through successful prosecution of offenders”.
This, he observed, can successfully be achieved through diligent investigation by the police and willing witnesses from the communities coming forward to testify.
Also speaking on the general management of rape cases, State Chairperson of International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA), Fatima Abubakar enumerated some key responsibilities of community in assisting the police and courts towards prosecuting offenders.
According to her, communities should be educated on the need to report such cases as soon as it happens and also not to tamper with anything on the body of the victim until when all evidence are established by relevant authorities.
Fatima Abubakar, also doubles as the chairperson of ASHH Foundation SGBV Case Management and member of Bauchi State Action Committee on SGBV. The FIDA chairperson stated that there are things that needs to be proven during prosecution of rape cases and those evidence are only obtainable during investigations.
She therefore called for closer collaboration between all stakeholders towards mitigating SGBV to the barest minimum.
It was gathered that the capacity training organized by ASHH Foundation in collaboration with Action Aid and Global affairs Canada, attracted participants from the Police, Civil Defense Corps, Medical Doctors, Ministry of Justice, relevant MDAs, CSOs and the Media.