The Lagos State Director of Public Prosecutions, Mrs. Olabisi Ogungbesan, on Monday closed her argument in the trial of 31-year-old Akolade Arowolo, who allegedly killed his banker-wife, Titilayo, at their Isolo residence in Lagos.
Akolade was first arraigned before Justice Lateefah Okunnu of an Ikeja High Court on December 21, 2011, on one count of murder.
Ogungbesan closed the prosecution with the 16th witness, Kingsley Ehebha, a fraud analyst from MTN Nigeria.
Titilayo’s sister, Ijeh Oyakhire, and her father, George, were among the witnesses who testified during prosecution.
The 15th prosecution witness, Prof. John Obafunwa of the Department of Pathology, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja had during his testimony said that Titilayo had over 76 stab wounds.
However, attempts by Ogungbesan to tender Akolade’s call logs between June 1 and July 26, 2011, and a covering note from MTN as evidence were opposed by Akolade’s lawyer, Olanrewaju Ajanaku.
Ajanaku claimed that they were not certified in accordance with the provision of the Evidence Act, adding that the call logs were not legible enough.
He said, “My Lord, the call logs as it is contained in that document is totally blurred. I can’t see anything and I did complain about it to my learned DPP when I was served.”
However, Ogungbesan argued that the call logs were not only legible but it also satisfied the provision of sections 84 and 86 of the Evidence Act.
She said, “Though I subject this argument to my Lord’s wisdom, I want to state that the call log is not blurred and it’s clear enough. I say it with all sense of responsibility that my learned colleague may need to wear his reading glasses.
“Besides, the documents I’m tendering as evidence are not public documents and hence do not need certification. MTN even went a step forward to stamp and sign it and inscribed on it ‘private and confidential’.”
Ruling on the application, Okunnu overruled Ajanaku’s objection and admitted the MTN covering letter and the call logs as exhibit P65 and P66 respectively.
She said, “The document in question is legible and very clear, though it is tiny. The two documents also substantially complied with the Evidence Act as the person who generated them in the normal course of duty is in court and has identified them.”
While being led in evidence by Ogungbesan, Ehebha who said he joined MTN in 2004 before becoming an analyst in the employ of the company in 2010 explained that the owner of the phone (Akolade)with number 08034460*** was indeed within Oshodi/ Isolo area on the day Titilayo was killed.
He said, “I generated the call logs through an automated system based on oracle software application and it shows the time calls were being made and the terminating and originating city of the calls.
“On June 24, 2011, the owner of the telephone received five calls. He recharged the phone at 7:58am, received a text message at 12:55 pm. The last voice call he received was at 11:11am and the terminating area was Oshodi/Isolo axis.”
Asked while being cross-examined by Ajanaku if the system had not been sabotaged or broken down to exclude some other calls made through to the line, Ehebha said, “ All our system are audited and our system does not crash because we have backs ups. When system A is down, system B goes into operation. So every call made to the line are always captured with the exception of missed calls.”
After the re-examination, Ogungbesan closed the case for prosecution, saying “at this juncture we wish to close our case for prosecution.”
Okuunu subsequently adjourned till November 29 for the defence to open their case and call the five witnesses they prepared.