Examining the rights of suspects under the constitution and administration of criminal justice act: The role of legal aid council
Author(s): Lilian E Effiong
Abstract: The Constitution of Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) guarantees inherent rights not because of their recognition by laws but because they are humans . In the same vein, the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA) 2015 was enacted to foster the interest of justice in Nigeria but due to the restrictions of its applicability to the federal Capital territory and Federal Courts in Nigeria, many of the Nigerian states are yet to adopt the laws and by implication, its provisions on the rights of suspects. However, both the Constitution and ACJA 2015 have made the rights of a Defendant in a criminal proceeding pivotal and important. And in the situation that a person accused of committing a crime lacks the financial wherewithal to provide for himself adequate legal representation, the Legal Aid Act empowers the Legal Aid Council established under the Act to step up to the aid of such individuals for effective representation so as to ensure access to justice. This article therefore seeks to discuss the general rights afforded a suspect under the Constitution and the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 with a view to specifically x-ray the rights of a suspect to legal representation and the roles played by the Legal Aid Council of Nigeria. The article recommends ways to improve the enjoyment of these rights and advocates more practical ways of protection during investigation as well as court trial.
Lilian E Effiong. Examining the rights of suspects under the constitution and administration of criminal justice act: The role of legal aid council. Int J Criminal Common Statutory Law 2021;1(2):09-16.