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5 Rights An Accused Person Have While Facing Trial in Court

Certain protective measures are put in place by the Nigerian Constitution and other laws to ensure that an accused person standing trial for an offence is given fair trial. This means that such trial should be recognised also by other people as being fair as well.

Trials should be seen as fair in order not to persecute offenders, but to adequately prosecute them. In this article, we would examine 5 rights that an accused has while facing trial in court. They include:

1. Right to fair hearing:

Section 36 (1) of the Nigerian Constitution provides that a person should be entitled to a fair hearing within a reasonable time by a court or other tribunal established by law and constituted in a manner that shows impartiality.

2. Right to trial in public:

Section 36 (4) of the Nigerian Constitution states that whenever a person is charged with a criminal offence, he is entitled to a fair trial in public within a reasonable time by a court or tribunal.

3. Presumption of innocence:

Section 36 (5) of the Constitution provides that every person that is charged with a criminal offence would be innocent until proven guilty. Any act or word suggesting that a person is a criminal before being pronounced so by the courts is unconstitutional and wrong

4. Right to interpreter:

Section 36 (6) (e) of the constitution states that every person charged with a criminal offence shall be informed promptly in the language that he understands and in detail the nature of the offence.

Also the provision of the interpreter is required by law to be without any cost.

5. Right to Counsel:

According to Section 36 (6) (c) of the Nigerian Constitution, any person charged with a criminal offence has the right to either defend himself in person or through any legal practitioner of his choice.

On no account should anyone be denied of his right to a counsel of his choice, and if he or she decides to defend his case himself, a counsel will not be forced on him.

Content created and supplied by: Busayomi (via Opera News )

Nigerian Constitution

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