Convicted husband killer, Maryam Sanda, seeks Appeal Court’s quash of death Sentence

Killer of her husband, Maryam Sanda, who was sentenced to death by banging by an Abuja High Court, has gone to the Court of Appeal, Abuja, to seek the upturning of the judgement which sentenced her to death.

Maryam Sanda approached the higher court on appeal three weeks after she was convicted and sentenced to death by hanging by a Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court which found her guilty of killing her husband, Bilyaminu Bello.

Sanda in the Notice of Appeal which was based on 20 grounds, requested the Appeal Court to set aside the judgement of the lower court and acquit her.

She said that the trial judge, Justice Yusuf Halilu, was under pressure of bias and prejudices. She argued that this resulted in the denial of her right to fair hearing and her conviction based on circumstantial evidence.

Sanda said the judge upheld the judgement despite the reasonable doubt that was created by evidence of witnesses, lack of confessional statement, absence of murder weapon, lack of corroboration of evidence by two or more witnesses, and lack of autopsy report to determine the true cause of her husband’s death.

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She contested that the judgment of the trial court was totally “a miscarriage of justice.”

She also protested the failure of the trial judge to rule, one way or the other, on her preliminary objection, challenging the charge preferred against her and the jurisdiction of the court as evidence of bias and a denial of her right to fair hearing as constitutionally guaranteed.

Sanda, accordingly, demanded the Court of Appeal to grant her prayers and set aside her conviction and sentence and acquit her.

Justice Halilu sentenced Sanda to death by hanging on January 27 for stabbing Bilyaminu to death, bringing an end to the protracted trial of the appellant.

Late Bilyaminu was the son of a former National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr Haliru Bello.

The police commenced prosecution of Sanda for culpable homicide in November 2017 and sought a death penalty against her on two counts.

They told the court that the killing was premeditated, insisting that Sanda stabbed her husband with broken bottles at about 3.50am on the day the murder occurred.

Sanda repeatedly pleaded not guilty to the crime.

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