A story written by INEGBENOISE OSEODION OSAGIE. (07068221839, 08093828575, [email protected])
Ivie sucked in a long breath and prayed she uttered the right words. She would soon be called out to witness. Her eyes met Ezinne’s, which were half-closed, pointing from a distance. The once full face had narrowed to a thin line.
Mr Victor called Ivie into the witness box. She breathed into her palms and rose. She found her mum among the spectators. The woman nodded.
Ivie walked to the witness box. Richard was seated a small distance from her and had his head bowed to the desk. She entered the box and gave face to the lawyer.
“Are you Miss Ivie Abbe Oboh?” Mr Victor asked.
“Your house address, please?”
“18th street, Olodi. Lagos State.”
“Have you ever heard of the name ‘Bakare Damijo’?”
“Have you seen him in person?”
“Do you have any relationship with him?”
She thought of the right words to say. “He is a friend.”
“How close is the friendship?”
“We’re close friends.”
“Would you want to see any of your close friends hurt?”
“And would you do anything within your power to thwart that?”
“On March 17th, 2:57 P.M., did you make a phone call to this Bakare Damijo?”
“And what did you two talk about?”
She lowered her gaze to the edge of the wooden box. “I phoned to know of his wellbeing. With the way he sounded, I suspected something to be wrong, something that might be threatening to him.”
“What way did he sound?
“He was whispering, and elements of fear mixed with his voice.”
“And what did you do on noticing that?”
“I figured out his location and thought of sending the police there. I called Mr Richard for a number with which I could reach the police.”
“Did Bakare Damijo tell you his location himself?”
“No, I figured it out. I could hear faint wind moans and trees’ rustle, so I figured it would be his orchard. I’ve been to the orchard several times.”
“When you phoned Mr Richard, what did you two discuss?”
“He gave me the police number and demanded for Bakare’s location.”
“Did he tell you why he demanded for the location?”
“He said he wanted to send another police team there in case those I called were not fast enough. I believed him because he served in the armed forces. I thought police dealings to be part of his knowledge, which had me thinking he might help in some way.”
“And did he help?”
She stared at the lawyer and searched for an answer in his face. His face was blank. The lawyer should want to hear that Richard helped, but there was a hint of untruthfulness in that because what he called help landed Richard in jail.
“Did he help?” he asked again.
“I never would have wanted him to drive to the scene. I would have preferred he left the police to do their job.” She wondered if that was the right reply.
“If Mr Richard never arrived at the scene, do you believe the true felons would probably never have been seen?”
“Objection.” The prosecuting attorney stood up and faced the judge. “My Lady, that is a compound question. There is an assertion of someone else being the felon.”
“Overruled. The defence had not asserted anyone the felon. Mr Victor, you may please continue.”
“Thank you, My Lady.” He returned to Ivie. “Miss Oboh, do you believe that without Mr Richard’s presence at the scene, the true felons would never have been seen.”
“I believe so.”
The lawyer walked to his desks and carried two phones from his clerk. He returned to the podium and showed them to the judge. “My Lady, if it pleases the court, the defence would like to introduce these mobile phones showing the date and times of calls into evidence. If they are any doubts on the calls of Miss Ivie, her phone could be checked to clear the doubts.”
The bailiff received the phones.
“Any objections to the introduction of these phones into evidence?” Her Ladyship asked the prosecuting attorney.
To Be Continued…