Rivers Murder Trial: Accused To Face Fresh Murder Charges

murder trialThe murder trial involving the former chairman of Asari Toru Local Government, Ojukaye Flag-Amachree, has taken a new twist.

This is because the State High Court 1 presided over by the chief judge of the state has ordered the Nigerian Prisons Authority to produce the accused in court on Monday, July 4, 2016 to face fresh charges of murder brought before it.

This comes as the Court of Appeal is set to hear the bail application filed by the accused before the Court of Appeal over the first murder charge brought against him.

More controversy appears to be trailing the trial, as counsel to the accused, Ken Atsuwete, told journalists in the state capital that the Rivers State Government is hell- bent on persecuting his client

He said that his client was being denied access to justice.

However, the Attorney-General of the state, Emmanuel Aguma, has insisted that the government remains committed to achieving justice in the matter

From the look of things, the accused may be appearing before two courts on July 4, as many wait to see how it will all play out.

Group Petitions NJC Against President Of Appeal Court

Appeal CourtThe National Judicial Commission has been petitioned over an alleged abuse of judicial powers by the President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa.

In the petition filed by the Civil Liberties Organisation of Nigeria’s south-south zone, Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa is accused of undue interference in an ongoing murder trial in Rivers State.

Pistorius Apologises For Killing Reeva Steenkamp

Oscar Pistorius enters the dock before in court proceedings at the Pretoria Magistrates courtThe South African blade runner, Oscar Pistorius, accused of killing his girlfriend, Reeva Steenkamp on Monday apologised to her family, saying he was trying to protect her.

In a trembling voice, an emotional Pistorius said he was “trying to protect” her and said he could not imagine her family’s pain.

While giving his testimony at the resumed murder trial, Mr Pistorius said he suffered “terrible nightmares” and often woke up smelling Ms Steenkamp’s blood.

Prosecutors say he killed her in February 2013 after an argument. He says he mistook her for an intruder.

The Paralympic athlete told Ms Steenkamp’s relatives that there “hasn’t been a moment since this tragedy happened that I haven’t thought about your family”.

Trying To Protect Reeva

“I wake up every morning and you’re the first people I think of, the first people I pray for. I can’t imagine the pain and the sorrow and the emptiness that I’ve caused you and your family.

“I was simply trying to protect Reeva. I can promise that when she went to bed that night she felt loved.

“I’m scared to sleep, I have terrible nightmares, I can smell blood and wake up terrified,” he said.

He added that he never wanted to handle a gun again.

The athlete, 27, told the court about his difficult childhood after being born with parts of both legs missing and needing to wear prosthetic limbs.

After a recess, Mr Pistorius was asked whether he and his family had been exposed to criminal acts.

He said there had been many break-ins while he was growing up.

Mr Pistorius said he had been shot at on the highway and on another occasion was followed by a car into his gated community. He said he had his gun with him and the two men in the car had sped off.

Mr Pistorius said he was also attacked at a party in December 2012, and had to have stitches in the head.

As he detailed how important religion was to him, Mr Pistorius again became emotional and his counsel, Barry Roux, asked for an adjournment.

The prosecution said that as long as this was not a daily occurrence there would be no objection and the case will resume on Tuesday morning.

The BBC reports that the defence team has been trying to paint a picture of a man whose life has been peppered with tragedy, fear and vulnerability.

South African bags life imprisonment for killing Terreblanche

30-year-old Chris Mahlangu, a black farmworker has been sentenced to life imprisonment for the murder of South African white supremacist leader, Eugene Terreblanche in a case that has generated racial tension in the city of Ventersdorp.

To sound their solidarity for Chris Mahlangu, over a 100 protesters sang anti-white songs outside the courtroom in the city, west of Johannesburg also protesting against Mahlangu were about 20 white protesters who carried the dummy of a black man with a rope around his neck and a sign that said: “Hang Mahlangu.” while Mahlangu was leaving the court.

A second man, Patrick Ndlovu, who was a teenager at the time of the killing two years ago, was sentenced to a two-year prison sentence which means he goes free. Ndlovu was acquitted of murder but found guilty of breaking and entering with intent to steal. Initially, he was not named because of his age. He turned 18 during the trial.

Chris Mahlangu pleaded guilty but argued that he acted in self-defence in what the judge found was a violent dispute over wages.

Mahlangu was found guilty for beating Terreblanche, 69, to death with an iron in April 2010. Mahlangu said he feels he did no wrong by ridding the world of a man some called a monster.

In 1997, Terreblanche was sentenced to six years in prison for the attempted murder of a black security guard and assaulting a black gas station worker. Terreblanche’s influence in the white supremacist movement had waned by the time he died.

The judge had rejected a defense argument that Mahlangu had been sodomized by Terreblanche and acted in self-defence. Mahlangu also claimed that Terreblanche infected him with HIV.

Zola Majavu, Mahlangu’s lawyer, said on Wednesday that they are planning to appeal both the court’s findings and the sentence.

After the sentencing, the Young Communist League of South Africa released a statement calling the judgment racially biased.

Terreblanche co-founded the Afrikaner Resistance Movement, known by its Afrikaans initials as the AWB, to seek an all-white republic within South Africa.