It was the morning of Samson’s arraignment at the Regional Magistrate Court of Lagos. Mary, Ifeanyi and Samuel were in attendance. The court room was quite vacant, with only a few family and friends coming to support the plaintiff.
Mary looked across at the young lady who was seated at the front with the prosecutors. She couldn’t get a good view of her. She swallowed and faced forward, as the judge entered the courtroom.
“This honourable court of the Regional Magistrate Court of Lagos, with the Honourable Judge Folashade Ogunbiyi, is now in session. It is COURT!!!” the court clerk announced the commencement of the hearing. Everyone rose up and sat down again after the Magistrate did.
“Call the next case,” said the Magistrate.
“For arraignment, Criminal Case No. 32498 – The State vs. Samson Uwanna for the crime of Rape,” the clerk read.
At the prodding of his lawyer, Samson stepped forward and went to take his place in the dock. He felt like a cockroach under the stare of the domineering looking judge. When he sat down, he kept his eyes on his sister and her husband, remembering Lanre’s advice not to look at Antonia.
“Appearance for prosecution and the defence counsel,” called the Magistrate.
This episode is accessible to members only at Ufuomaee’s Series Blog. It will become live on the 22nd of January, 2020.