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A small win for the campaign for the decriminalization of marijuana in Nigeria

by on November 14, 2019
 

Yesterday, there was a trial at the Federal High Court Abuja where the accused (name withheld) was charged for possessing cannabis and was called to make allocutus having pleaded guilty.

Lucius Nwosu SAN seeing defendant had no lawyer applied for leave to plead allocutus for the accused.

Below are some points which the accused counsel, Lucius Nwosu SAN drew the Court’s attention to:

1st point:

“The charge classifying a Class C drug as cannabis with a Class A drug as Cocaine makes the charge baseless.”

2nd point:

“Given the non commercial quantity found on him which costs N2,500, it will cost the govt more than N2500 to feed him in prison if sent to jail.”

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3rd point:

“Chances that the man might learn other vices in prison makes a long sentence antisocial.”

4th point:

“In Netherlands and some states in USA, it is not a crime to possess and smoke cannabis.”

5th point:

“Even my learned friend Gov. Akeredolu has advised the government to legalise cultivation of cannabis to aid revenue. Court refuses to put down this point.”

He finally urged the court to exercise restraint in punishing accused and recommended a light fine of N2,500.

Court advised Paul Usoro, SAN who was also in court and is the current NBA President to look into the amendment of the Indian Hemp Act which it considers obsolete.

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Mr. Usoro agreed to look into it.

Court in its sentence agreed that the act was minimal and sentenced accused to 4 months in prison with an option of fine of N20,000.

It was later reported that Lucius Nwosu SAN and Paul Usoro SAN have raised the fine money for the accused.

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