The allegation of unlawful sexual assault of a female student of the Rivers State University, Praise Ndamati against one of her lecturers, Professor David Ogbonna was on Monday, September 25, 2023 quashed for lack of evidence.
All the evidential claims by the female student could not be tendered before the court during the course of trial.
The female student, Praise Ndamati had earlier claimed that she recorded her discussion with the accused but could not provide the recorder neither was she able to provide the disc into which she claimed she transferred the recording.
The underwear Miss Ndamati claimed had a semen stain after the alleged rape was not subjected to a forensic examination of any kind, and the prosecution team also failed to call the medical doctor who conducted the medical examination on the female to come and testify.
Worse still, the student girl friend the female student claimed was with her on the day of the alleged sexual assault did not also come to testify.
Consequently, Chief Magistrate Poromon Menenen of Chief Magistrate Court 13 of Rivers State Judiciary, on grounds that there was no substantial evidence to prove the case, dismissed the case in favour of the Professor of the Environmental Biology, David Ogbonna. Prof. Ogbonna was also acquitted for his innocence of the charge.
G.U. Amana, the State prosecuting counsel in the matter representing Rivers State Ministry of justice declined to speak to journalists outside court after the judgement.
One of the defence counsel, Dr. Emma Okah, in an interview with journalists outside the court said the defence team knew the case would go the way it went because there was no evidence from day one.
Dr Okah asserted that Professor Ogbonna has been innocent from beginning and will continue to be innocent.
Dr Okah regretted that in a case where there was no evidence against Professor Ogbonna, the Professor was taken through such trial which has about 22 damaging reports against the Professor on Google.
He also revealed that steps will be taken by defence counsel of Professor David Ogbonna to remedy his suspension by the Rivers State University
Dr Okah however, expressed joy that the court has finally vindicated Professor Ogbonna who had maintained he is innocence since the beginning of the case.
Recall the case has been on since June 22, 2022 when the renowned Professor of Environmental Biology was first charged to court and docked. He was later granted bail into the sum of two million naira.