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Despite viral video, Court rules out assault suit against Senator Elisha Abbo

by Tunde Olorungbotemi

A Magistrate Court in Zuba has struck out an assault case instituted against Adamawa-North lawmaker, Senator Elisha Abbo for lack of evidence, VOICE AIR MEDIA has learnt.

The ruling, which has shocked millions of Nigerians, was made despite a viral video showing the Senator hitting a woman identified as Osimibibra Warmates at a sex shop in Abuja on May 11, 2019, as well as a televised public apology tendered to the victim by Senator Elisha Abbo. 

In the viral video captured by the CCTV of the sex shop, Senator Abbo could be seen hitting the victim at least 6 times unprovoked.

However, the Magistrate, Abdullahi Ilelah, who presided on the ruling said the police failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the lawmaker assaulted Warmate and therefore upheld a no-case submission filed by Senator Abbo, according to a copy of the judgment confirmed by The Punch. 

According to the court reports, the Magistrate said the prosecution’s evidence which centred on the oral testimony of the victim, the CCTV footage of the incident, as well as the video clip of an apology from the defendant, does not establish a prima facie case of criminal force and assault against the Senator.

Magistrate Ilelah also berated the investigating police officer, ASP Mary Daniel for charging Senator Abbo to court without investigating the case. 

“In fact, she has succeeded in creating a doubt in the mind of this court during cross-examination, and the Supreme Court held that where there is a doubt in a criminal trial, such doubt should be resolved in favour of the defendant,” Magistrate, Abdullahi Ilelah said in a copy of the judgment quoted by The Punch.

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