‘They are just buying time’- OYAKHIRE family lawyer
The Arowolo family has reportedly made a move to appeal the death sentence passed on their son, Akolade Arowolo, who was convicted of killing his wife Titilayo. In a case of murder, according to Nigerian law, the convict is given a grace of 28 days with which if not satisfied with the judgment can head to the Appeal Court.
However, the late Titilayo’s family are insisting the law should take its full course.
We spoke to Barrister Nelson Ekoh, lawyer to the Oyakhire family, and he told ENCOMIUM Weekly that the Arowolo family are just trying to buy time with the appeal and that he doubts if they will succeed at the Appeal Court.
“I am aware of the move to appeal the judgment. They are just trying to buy time, it’s a delay tactics. We are waiting for their application. In a case like this they would need to go through another process of filing an appeal, this time it will be against the state. I doubt if they would succeed at the Appeal Court because it is very difficult to upturn the final decision of the court.
AKOLADE AROWOLO SETTLES IN IKOYI PRISON
Convicted wife killer, Akolade Arowolo has settled down with life inside his confinement, Cell D7 at Ikoyi Prisons, Polo Road, off Ribadu Road, Ikoyi Lagos. This was where he stayed before his sentence weeks back and as soon as he left the court premises he was returned to his cell. This was necessary for him to appeal the judgment before he would be moved to condemned criminals cell if he loses the appeal.
THE LAST TIME A DEATH SENTENCE WAS PASSED ON ANY NIGERIAN
The last time a death sentence was passed on any Nigerian was in 2007 and that was the case involving General Overseer of the Christian Praying Assembly, Chukwuemeka Ezeugo, aka Reverend King. He was convicted by Justice Joseph Oyewole of a Lagos high Court and sentenced to death by hanging on January 11, 2007 for allegedly setting Uzoh ablaze over an offence which he classified as “acts of fornication” alongside others. He appealed the judgement but it was upheld by Court of Appeal in Lagos.
THE LAST TIME AN EXECUTION WAS CARRIED OUT
That was in 2013 in Edo state. Four convicted criminals were executed by hanging in the premises of the Benin City Central Prisons. The four prisoners had been convicted of armed robbery and murder and after all their appeals had been exhausted their death warrants were signed
HOW LONG DOES THE LAW PERMIT BEFORE APPEAL
When an accused in a criminal case is convicted and not satisfied with a decision made by the court of first instance or the district court, he or she may lodge an application for leave to appeal with the Court of Appeal within 28 days from the day of conviction/sentence. If he or she does not lodge an application within time, he or she may apply to the Court of Appeal for leave to appeal out of time.
HOW AKOLADE AROWOLO WAS NABBED
To refresh our memory, here are the graphic details of what transpired after Akolade Arowolo killed Titilayo Arowolo on Friday, June 24, 2011.
Akolade was arrested on Saturday, June 25, 2011, at their 8, Akindehinde Street, Isolo, Lagos residence around 11pm. He was said to have come back to his flat the next day at around that time perhaps, to pick up a few things before making good his escape. Policemen had already laid ambush and were waiting. He was immediately arrested. Titilayo’s family had been contacted and they took custody of her daughter. Kolade was taken to SCID, Panti, Yaba Lagos.
Prior to his arrest, some policemen had flagged down Kolade’s car around Aye Bus stop, Isolo, Lagos, and quizzed him on account of the bloodstains on his clothes but he tricked the policemen and escaped. He was covered in blood and even passersby thought he had been involved in an accident.
When they stopped him and started quizzing him, Kolade collapsed pretending to have fainted. As they were making efforts to revive him, he immediately got up and rushed across the road, nearly killing himself in the process because he was knocked down by a car. To the surprise of those present, he just picked himself up, boarded a bike and fled. Kolade’s car was immediately seized and taken to the Aswani Police Station, Isolo, Lagos.