I. L. KUTIGI, J.S.C. (Delivering the Leading Judgment): The appellant was charged with the offence of murder contrary to section 319(1) of the criminal code. He pleaded not guilty to the charge. Thereafter the prosecution called five witnesses and tendered some exhibits. The appellant testified in his own defence and called no witness.
The learned trial judge in a considered judgment found the appellant guilty as charged and sentenced him to death.
Being dissatisfied with the judgment of the High Court, the appellant appealed to the Court of Appeal, Enugu Division. Three issues were formulated for its determination thus:-
"(i) Did the learned trial judge comply with sections 154(1) and 182(1) of the Evidence Act before he received and relied on the evidence of PW1 to convict the accused and can the conviction stand?
(ii) Do the irregularities committed by the learned trial judge in the course of the trial not amount to denial of fair hearing to the accused?
(iii) Given the irreconcil…