Ezinne stepped down from the police van that had been used to transport her to the court. Luckily she was transported alone, not with other prisoners.
Her eyes combed the environment, there were reporters in the premises as expected but not as much as the last time when they looked like a bundle of rioters.
She was led into the courtroom by four prison warders with her hands cuffed together. The lawyer who had represented her on the last adjourned day was in court, he didn’t give her so much as a glance. She shook her head, maybe he had judged her guilty already, otherwise why wasn’t he in the least interested in speaking with he? She sat sandwiched between 2 officers wondering when her case would be called. Anyway she didn’t blame him, maybe in his mind there really no complicated details to be bothered with after all she had maintained that she didn’t kill her husband.
The song she had woken with played in her mind again and she hummed it.
It’s a miracle, talk to me…
The God of yesterday is still alive today
And He is doing many more miracles for all who care to believe…
Truly she needed this God of miracle, this was getting longer than necessary and truly she couldn’t see a way out of this as fast as she would wish. The loud bang on the door caused the lawyers scuttering around to their seats, those who were robed hurriedly put on their wigs while some who hadn’t robed rushed out of the courtroom to do so. It was exactly nine o’clock when the Judge walked into the courtroom as graciously as she had the last time. She would give anything to switch places with the judge, Ezinne thought wearily.
The judge took a bow and the entire court bowed with her before taking her seat to start the business of the day. The registrar called the first case and the lawyers announced their appearances before informing the court that it was for adoption of final addresses.
The Defence Counsel was on his feet addressing the court and elucidating the address he already had on paper when the Senior Advocate who was in charge of her case stepped in.
It was about time he came, Ezinne sighed in relief. Akunna was paying so much for his services and so why would he send a junior lawyer to represent her? A lawyer who looked like he was only called to Bar yesterday.
Some murmurings passed amongst the lawyers in court and the Senior Advocate breezed in like he owned the place. He shook hands with one of the other senior lawyers sitting at the Bar before making himself comfortable in the inner Bar reserved for the Senior Advocates. His junior adjusted his tie, shifting nervously in his seat, he waited for the SAN to turn to his direction before handing him a file from the bundle he had on the desk before him. He bowed when the file touched the hand of the learned silk.
Ezinne met the learned silk’s eyes and he acknowledged her before turning to face the judge, at least he acknowledged the presence of his client, which was much better than his employee who never spared her so much as a glance. What exactly was he going to say to this court and how was he going to represent her? Ezinne wondered, the man had only spoken to her once, well she guessed he was a great lawyer, if not, how else would he have gotten the prestige and to his position?
She bounded the dock when her case was called. Now was the time, hopefully her case would be done in a few months and she would be out of this drama.
“My Lord, we shall lead evidence to show that the defendant was the only person in the same apartment with the deceased who was capable of committing the offence defined in section 220 of the Criminal law of Lagos state and who had sufficient motive and opportunity to commit the said offence”
Motive and opportunity? Ezinne angled her head towards the Prosecutor whose name she had missed. How can he stand there and accuse me of murder just because I had a good reason to kill my husband? She ogled at him, when did wishful thinking become a crime? She would probably wish him out of this courtroom and see if he would vanished. She eyed him then turned to meet the Judge’s eyes. The Judge was watching her probably trying to see within her soul, Ezinne lowered her gaze, sorry that she had been caught eyeing the prosecution, sorry that she had been caught at her bad moment.
“My Lord we shall lead evidence and rely heavily on the authorities of Akinbolade Dele v The State, Court of Appeal, Adepetu v. State, Durwode v. State to prove that the defendant committed the offence defined in the already stated section 220 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State. It is trite that circumstantial evidence can form the basis for a conviction and so we hinge this case on this principle. We are grateful sir”