Jang’s Trial: Defendant’s Confessional Statements Obtained Voluntarily, says Witness
The trial within trial of Yusuf Pam, a former cashier in the Office of the Secretary to the State Government, who is standing trial alongside Jonah Jang, a former Plateau State governor for an alleged N6.2billion fraud commenced on July 24, 2019 with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC presenting two witnesses.
Testifying before Justice Daniel Longji of the Plateau State High Court, sitting in Jos, the first witness, Musa Sunday, who is an EFCC investigator, told the Court that Pam was never at any time pressured to make his confessional statements and was never put under duress or psychological trauma.
Counsel for Pam, D.P. Dusu, had at the last sitting on July 23, 2019 raised objection to the admissibility of the sstatements he made to Sunday in the course of investigations, arguing that his client made the statements “under duress, suffering trauma psychologically”. The objection prompted the trial judge to order a trial within trial.
Led in evidence by Rotimi Jacobs, SAN, Sunday narrated how Pam was invited by the EFCC for interrogation as part of investigations into the alleged fraud.
He said: “Pam had made his first statement on January 16, 2017 in an open space office at the EFCC with other officers about 10 in number including the Unit Head, Babaginda Umar, Janet Justin, Simon Okom among others who were present carrying out various duties assigned to them.
“Pam was cautioned that he should be truthful and that anything he says will be used as evidence in a court of Law.
“In line with the investigation, Pam was asked relevant questions concerning the role he played in respect to the suspicious transactions, and he rendered the statements.
“Pam also gave all the details by himself between 11am and 5pm during which he was allowed to get refreshments and lunch.
“So I’m really shocked by his claims of duress.”