Justice Usman Na’abba of a Kano High Court has fixed March 9 and March 10, 2022 for ruling in the trial-within-trial in the case of murder of a minor, Hanifa Abubakar, filed against Abdulmalik Tanko, her teacher.
Tanko, 34, is charged alongside Hashimu Isyaku, 37 and Fatima Musa, 26, all of Tudun Murtala Quarters, Kano with criminal conspiracy, attempt to kidnap, abetment/kidnapping and concealing a corpse.
The offence, the Kano State Government said, contravened the sections 97, 95 and 273,274(b) and 277 of the Penal Code Laws of Kano State 1991.
Justice Usman Na’abba fixed the date after listening to the Prosecution and Defence Counsel.
Na’abba ordered that the suspects be remanded in a correctional facility.
Earlier, the Prosecution Counsel, Musa Abdullahi-Lawan, who is the Kano State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, presented some witnesses who testified in the case.
Sergeant Ridwan Ibrahim, attached to the Anti-Kidnapping Squad, Kano State Police Command, told the court that the case was transferred to the unit on January 20 from the Department of State Services.
Ibrahim added that he was asked to take the statement of Tanko and Muhammad.
He said that he cautioned Tanko on having a lawyer present before making the statement.
Ibrahim said the statement was recorded in English Language and that Tanko read, agreed and signed the statement.
He said Muhammad also read and signed her statement.
The prosecution counsel, therefore, urged the court to accept and mark the statement as exhibit.
The defence counsel, Mukhtar Labaran, of the Legal Aid Council, objected, saying that the suspects’ statements were not taken voluntarily.
Labaran then urged the court for trial-within-trial to ensure fairness in the case.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that a trial within trial is a complete trial on its own, during which the main case is put on hold, and parties are called upon to prove whether a statement was voluntarily obtained.