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Title: Establishing a Bulwark for the Voluntariness of Confessional Statements in Criminal Trials in Nigeria: Towards Rethinking Section 15 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act
Authors: Ekoja, Gabriel O
Dawap, Paul M.
Jacdonmi, Vivian Urowoli
Keywords: Electronic Recording
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Contemporary Readings in Security, Law and Governance: A Festschrift in honour of Mal. Al-Hassan S. Yakmut
Series/Report no.: Chapter 7;Pp 114-135
Abstract: In every nation of the world, one critical responsibility of law enforcement is the investigation of crime and the provision of on-hands evidential support for prosecuting offenders. Where the offence is grave, investigators would do more to elicit information from suspects, especially that which is regarded as 'the best evidence' – a confessional statement. The process of evoking this evidence usually incorporates methods that generate controversies and concerns for human rights protection. During investigations and trials, the need for the State to punish perpetrators of crime, mostly unspoken, is an undercurrent to the human rights of the defendant. To strike a balance between the rights of the Suspect (Defendant) and the State, sections 15(4) of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act 2015 was worded to take advantage of advancement in digital technology. It provides for discretionary electronic recording of confessions. This paper examined the general principles of confession and sections 15(4) of the Act.1 The researchers found that despite likely perceived challenges necessitating the discretion on electronic recordings, the hard to ignore, self-incriminating evidence will require a hard-rock convincing status to secure a conviction. This paper, therefore, argued that the trend in evidence gathering, preservation, and presentation in Nigeria, requires a thorough rethinking, especially the discretionary nature of sections 15(4) of the law under review. The researchers accordingly recommended the use of cost-effective audio-visual devices and instruments to record confessions, as well as an immediate amendment of the section to establish a bulwark for the admissibility of confessions.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/123456789/3430
Appears in Collections:International Law and Jurisprudence

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