There is no law that says the plaintiff or the prosecution must bring a million witnesses or evidence to court before he can succeed in his case. A court can convict on a single witness. A case is not decided by the numbers of witnesses, single credible convincing evidence is enough to convict in a case but there are some exceptions”. The exceptions refer to by this learned mean the circumstances where corroboration will be required before any judge can decide his case. Although a judge can convict upon the uncorroborated evidence of an accomplice but he must warn himself before given such conviction in fact he is advised to seek corroborating evidence before convicting an accused because failure to do so can lead to the setting aside of his judgment on appeal.
Generally, corroboration cuts a niche for itself, it is used both in criminal and civil cases. It will also state the position of judges on the issue of corroboration and various decisions of court on different issues arising from corroboration. In law, corroboration, though popular yet controversial virtually under all legal system this is due to the influence and interpretation of the provisions of the Evidence Act and the criminal and penal codes (on corroboration of evidence) by judges. The desirability of corroboration as a requirement in certain criminal and civil cases under the Nigerian law of evidence and the hope of examine it critically under our legal system is the core focus of this study. This work will therefore elucidate the meaning of corroboration in Nigeria and Canada generally, the role of judges in deciding both civil and criminal cases and various statutory provisions in respect of corroboration of evidence in Nigeria relying largely on both primary and secondary source of law of evidence in Nigeria.
Corroboration is evidence tending to confirm some fact of which other evidence is given. As a matter of common sense, the more corroboration is present the easier it is to prove a fact and from this point of view a judge will always look for corroborating evidence. Corroboration according to Osborn’s Concise Dictionary1 means independent evidence which implicate a person accused of a crime by connecting him with it, or an evidence which confirms in some fact particularly not only that the crime has been committed but also that the accused actually committed the crime. According to Oxford Dictionary2 corroboration mean evidence given to further support or strength existing evidence.
Corroboration according to the Evidence Ac3t refers to an independent statement made by other witness which proves the truth of the first evidence. It is also refer to as the requirement in some jurisdiction such as Scotland that any evidence adduced be backed up by at least one other source.
Corroboration is a mandatory requirement under certain circumstances, in the sense that no
matter how convincing the evidence requiring corroboration is, the party relying on that evidence
will fail unless he adduces corroboration.
Corroboration is therefore called for where there is need order to ascertain that such evidence can
be relied upon to convict the accused person. Corroboration is a ground for the admissibility of
certain evidence for the purpose of conviction and if the corroborating evidence is not the same
with the existing evidence an accused can not be convicted upon such existing evidence.
This essay shall examine the various incidence where corroboration must or might be required to
be taken before there can be a conviction, corroboration under common law , Nigerian law. It
shall also examine the position of judges and statutory authorities and will also analyses various
issues arising from corroboration. This project is basically directed toward analyzing
corroboration as known under the Nigerian law of evidence. There shall also be an insight into
various circumstances as when, where and why corroboration is required.
1.1.0: BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
The reason for venturing into this topic is based on personal interest in the concept “Corroboration” and the desire to shed more light on it by analyzing it critically. This work is therefore based on the analysis of corroboration under the Nigerian law of evidence. It analysis shall include discussion on the nature of corroboration, effect of corroboration and instances where corroboration will or must be required among others.
1.2.0: OBJECTIVES OF STUDY
The main objective of this essay is to critically analysis corroboration under the Nigerian law of evidence in order to shed light on the concept of corroboration under the our legal system. Furthermore, the essay tends to highlight circumstances where corroboration may or must be required. It will also show the effect of corroboration on a piece of evidence, natures of corroboration, the position of judges in corroboration issues and examine the provision of the Evidence Act on corroboration. The basis for analysis shall be for the purpose of showing new areas in the concept as a result of dynamism in the legal system.
1.3.0: FOCUS OF STUDY
This essay shall focus on corroboration under the Nigerian law of evidence and other instances surrounding it.
1.4.0: SCOPE OF STUDY
This essay shall not exceed the content of this title; it shall be within the purview prescribed by the topic. Though corroboration appears to be universal, its application differs in different situation and circumstance. This essay has it main focus on the critical analysis of corroboration under the Nigerian law of evidence.
Both the primary and secondary sources of law are the basis for this research work. Thus the Evidence Act, Law text books, Law report, Articles on law, Various Statute and Cases on the subject matter are the sources of information. This project shall also be analytical in nature.
1.6.0: LITERATURE REVIEW
This work has been able to shed more light on the meaning of corroboration under the Nigerian law of evidence, analyzing views and postulations by different scholars and writers. The definition in this essay is limited to the resources used in the write up, this essay has successfully analyzed corroboration of evidence under the Nigerian legal system, Furthermore, corroboration of evidence has been critically analyzed under the common law and the Evidence Act, the effect of corroboration on a piece of evidence , the nature of corroboration and types of evidence requiring corroboration either as a matter of law or practice has also been examine . What amount to corroboration of evidence and the nature of uncorroborated evidence including the position of judges either to warn himself or to be cautious on issues of has been critically analyzed. The historical background of corroboration in Nigeria is examined and corroboration in civil and criminal cases is also examined.
The chapter one of this essay contain the proposal for the essay which include the Abstract,
Background, Objectives, Focus and scope of the study. It also contains the methodology and the
literature review of the essay which contain the various scholarly views and opinion concerning
the subject matter.
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