Court admits certificate evidence in forgery case against Edo lawmaker-elect

Hearing in a Forgery/Impersonation case brought against Edo State lawmaker-elect, Mr Ugiagbe Onaiwu, continued, yesterday, at a Criminal Court 1 of the Edo High Court, with the court admitting in evidence, a Certified True Copy of the West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) certificate tendered against the defendant.

The trial Judge, Justice Efe Ikponmwoba, admitted the certified copy after listening to the argument on the admissibility of the document from Counsel to both the complainant and defendant, Peter Ojo and Paul Osarenkhoe, respectively.

A staff of the WAEC, Mrs Dupe Elemikhena, who was subpoenaed by the court, had acknowledged the tendered document to be a certified copy by the Council.

But, in his argument, defendant Counsel, Paul Osarenkhoe, opposed the admissibility of the document and called for its rejection on the ground that the subpoenaed WAEC staff was not the maker of the document.

Besides, he contended that relevance of a document was not the only yardstick for admissibility.

But, in his reply, the State Counsel, Peter Ojo, argued that the first rule of admissibility was in the relevance of a document.

“Since the document is relevant, it should, thus, be accepted and admitted in this case,” he said.

The court, however, adjourned the case to June 30, for the complainant to call his last witness.

The Edo State Government had instituted the action against the APC State House of Assembly candidate for the 2019 general election, on the allegation of forgery and impersonation of the results he presented to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the poll.

Onaiwu is one of the 14 lawmakers-elect yet to be inaugurated.

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