There was mild drama today, Wednesday 6th December, at the state High Court in Kaduna before Hon Justice Gwada, in the case brought against some members of the Islamic Movement in Nigeria variously arrested in Zaria in the course of the brutal massacre in December, 2015 by the Kaduna state government. The survivors of that genocide are standing trial for sundry offences, including culpable homicide of one Corporal Dankaduna, allegedly killed during the massacre.
At the resumed hearing today, a retired Colonel Ayuba, the Pathologist who was said to have carried out the autopsy of corporal Dankaduna was put on the witness box as a prosecution witness.
In his testimony, he tried to suggest that the deceased soldier might have died on the 12th of December, 2015, the day the soldier was allegedly killed. This goes contrary to an earlier testimony he gave in the sister case being heard in Kaduna High Court 6, before Hon Justice Nyoms that the body of the corpse he performed autopsy on was “partially decomposed” suggesting that it died earlier than the date it was said to have died.
When the defence counsel, sought to tender report of the Kaduna Judicial Commission that looked into the Zaria massacre however, to further clarify matters, the prosecution opposed it based on procedural grounds, insisting that they must be given the document to be tendered at least ten days before being tendered.
During that earlier testimony before Justice Nyoms of state High Court 6, the retired Colonel had admitted then that he was told the said Dankaduna was killed by “friendly fire” and the corpse was decomposed by the time he carried out the autopsy.
As a result, the case was adjourned to 14th February, 2018 for the defense lawyers to properly tender the document and conduct their cross examination.
A total of 91 members of the IMN are standing trial before Justice Gwada, and another over 80 before Justice Nyoms of the Kaduna High Court for the same alleged killing of one soldier, Corporal DanKaduna.