EVIDENCE – CONFESSIONAL STATEMENT – Definition of confession as provided for in the Evidence Act; when does a statement become confessional

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“Section 28 of the Evidence Act 2011 provides that:- “(28) A confession is an admission made at any time by a person charged with a crime, stating or suggesting the inference that he committed that crime.” Confession under Section 28 of the Evidence Act supra is an admission made at any time by a person charged with, a crime stating or suggesting the inference that he committed the crime. To sustain conviction, the confession therefore must be free, voluntary, direct and positive, whether judicial or extra-judicial, provided the Court believes it is the truth. Therefore, once an accused person makes a statement under caution, saying or admitting the charge or creating the impression that he committed the offence charged, the statement becomes confessional. See THE STATE VS USMAN ISAH (Supra). The duty of the Court is to consider the circumstances under which it was given and to decide what weight to be attached to it.” Per SAMUEL CHUKWUDUMEBI OSEJI, JSC in UTTO v. STATE (2021-LCER-40501-SC) (Pp 12 – 13; Paras B – A)

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