jungle justice © I am Benue 2021

This Is One Of The Reasons Why Nigerians Are Against Jungle Justice

Social Justice 5/02/2021 by Doosuur Ukula

“Stone him!”

“Kill him!”

“Finish the idiot!”

“He deserves the death sentence!”

The furious hubbub of voices yelled in the air, creating a toxic atmosphere. Even the clouds seemed depressed and frustrated on that evening such that it refused to smile, it seemed so moody, the sun also began to run and take shelter behind the depressing clouds.

A handsome chubby man was been bedraggled, his bruised face and swollen body could tell a heap of story. He wept as Jesus did, he knew the hour of his death had come, but he never had the faintest idea that he would die by such mortification. He knew that his actions were injurious, it was borne by an unconsciously-conscious obsession beyond his control. The actus reus of his actions usually occurred before the men’s rea which was actually an abnormality. Even as a child, he had always wondered if he was possessed by some strong powerful forces, his behaviour was abnormal, he was taken to so many prayer houses by his family –nothing worked, he was suffering from an uncommon disease which was later diagnosed. It was kept clandestine from society to avoid his stigmatization.

“He is a thief, let’s apply the lynch law, he should be burned, such people are dealt with without mercy.” A kwashiorkoric man who looked pale like he had just been resurrected from the dead after a century said as he held three tyres that were acquired from an old wheel of a vehicle. He moved towards the bedraggled man who revealed his identity as John.

“Please, please, it was not intentional, please forgive me and temper your justice with mercy.” John bawled.

His only crime was that he stole someone’s motorcycle that was parked outside the owner’s house that evening. However, he was caught some minutes later before he moved an inch out of the street. The lynch mob delivered excruciating torture on him without a fit and proper investigation, some stoned him, beat him with planks and wood, tore him with sharp objects, spitted on him and he endured a hellish series of obloquy for theft. 

Truth is, he was technically innocent.

The Nigerian Constitution (1999 as amended) under Section 33 gives each and every person the right to life, no one has the right to deprive another of his life in the name of administering justice. Also, under Section 36 (5) of the same constitution, it states that every person is innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. The same Section 36 permits an accused person to get a lawyer and he is entitled to a fair hearing, you all should learn to read more about the law.

“Bring the fuel and a box of matches.” The lyncher said hoarsely with a thick voice. A gallon of petrol and a box of matches was brought to him.

“Please don’t kill me, I stole against my will, I am a sick man, I always steal, please don’t kill me.” John said shivering in a cloud of cold fear. He was drained in horror, his body itched and some blood modelled gradually out of his aching body.

“Foolish liar, thieves always lie, but you’re the worse of them all, so you always steal without your consent abi? How pathetic a liar you are! You thieves always have excuses out of the blue.” The lyncher man said.

“Do it quickly, let’s execute him before the police come here and let this stupid scum slip out of our hands and go freely, he can’t be charged to court, he must die today, under our own personal justice system.” The second lyncher; a man who had stolen 500,000 Naira years ago and was released after conviction by a competent court of law said. 

He looked like an elf and ugly in all ramifications: slabby-ugly character, bald head, rotten aplomb and a version of genetic failure. He collected the box of matches, removed two match-sticks and struck them, it lighted and dumped it on the fuelled body of John.

Actually, no one knows why I despise this man, he thinks he’s the only man whose family’s got dosh. He had harassed me several times to pay him his money, well, I still owe him a lot and now, it’s my turn to harass him with death, no one has even figured out that I know him and also have a personal grudge against him. I will gain at his death. He smirked as his thoughts ran in a rage.

John got justice for the gruesome murder. The National TV, social media, newspapers and the press kept reporting; the case of John sparked interest because the nature of John’s disease was a rarity and one which a larger percentage of the public knew nothing about, the country mourned his death after the realization of what had happened.

John screamed as the inferno surrounded him and pricked his skin every split second, he couldn’t free himself and run as the tyres hung around his neck clung to him, holding him bound. He kept wailing as his skin itched from the combustion, rivulets of acrimonious stream of tears escaped his orbs to seek reprieve from the intense heat.

“Please save me, someone save me, I will die, I didn’t steal intentionally, I am kleptomanic, I’m a sick man.” He kept screaming and his voice kept dimming.

Finally, the screams ended, his body turned black and charred, blisters popped every second and busted in the same splitting seconds. Some women cried and lamented, the children around kept screaming and saying “Jesus Christ! Jesus Christ!” severally. The sight of the burning man was ghastly and gory.

The police and some of John’s family members arrived the locus in quo/ locus criminis fifteen minutes later immediately after they heard the news, John had already died from the severe anguish featured by the lynching.

 The police addressed the public: “Good evening great citizens of our country, you have been patriotic towards our country and the laws that govern it, you love your country and want justice by all means –that’s the right thing. But your act today towards embracing justice has caused the life of a man who is technically innocent, you failed to trust in the justice system of your country today and also failed to obey the law. The Nigerian Constitution (1999 as amended) under Section 33 gives each and every person the right to life, no one has the right to deprive another of his life in the name of administering justice. Also, under Section 36 (5) of the same constitution, it states that every person is innocent until proven guilty by a court of law. The same Section 36 permits an accused person to get a lawyer and he is entitled to a fair hearing, you all should learn to read more about the law. The man you killed today is kleptomaniac! Kleptomania is a psychological disorder that causes an uncontrollable obsession with stealing without economic or material need. He steals not because he wishes to use what he has stolen, he steals because he is a sick man to steal, his family would have returned the vehicle back to the owner, those around him know of his stealing sickness. You also would have allowed the justice system (police –courts –prison) to handle this case of theft. You thus, killed an innocent man today due to jungle justice. This is wrong, this should be stopped, you, yes you may also be a victim someday. Stop jungle justice!”

The environment became boisterous and clamoured for justice for the wrongful execution of John by the jungle justiciars. The men who had killed John were subsequently arrested and tried by a competent court of law in Nigeria, meanwhile, the public abhorred and kicked against any further jungle justice. John got justice for the gruesome murder. The National TV, social media, newspapers and the press kept reporting; the case of John sparked interest because the nature of John’s disease was a rarity and one which a larger percentage of the public knew nothing about, the country mourned his death after the realization of what had happened.

Up till this moment, no form of jungle justice has occurred again, the whole country respect and believe in the justice system of the country.

One thought on “This Is One Of The Reasons Why Nigerians Are Against Jungle Justice

  1. Kris Atsaka

    Jungle justice is never an option to addressing a crime and must be discouraged and halted by all means.

    Reply

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