A magistrate court in Life Camp, Abuja, has ordered Yusuf Muazu, a 30-year-old labourer, to sweep the court premises for three hours for stealing a bowl of food and a cup of cold water.
According to Peter Ejike, the prosecutor and an assistant superintendent of police, FCT Command, Muazu had sneaked into a compound in Life Camp and made his way into the kitchen of one Chidibere Lewechi on July 1.
Muazu then stole a bowl of food with meat from the complainant’s pot with a cup of cold water.
Ejike claimed that the defendant ran out of luck when he was about to leave the kitchen with the stolen items as the younger brother to the complainant caught him and held him down with the help of neighbours.
The police charged Muazu to court for criminal trespass and theft, an offence which contravenes Sections 348 and 288 of the Penal Code Law.
Upon arraignment, the defendant pleaded guilty to the charges and begged the court for mercy.
“I plead for mercy. I want the court to forgive me. I was really hungry and I entered the woman’s kitchen and saw a pot of food and I fetched some and also a cup of water,” he said.
Giving the ruling, Sharon Tanko, the magistrate, said being hungry does not justify the defendant’s actions and he would have to face the consequences.
“The court having found the convict guilty of the offence and him being remorseful and not wasting the time of the court in admitting to his crime, is hereby ordered to engage in three hours’ community service,” she said.
“You are hereby ordered to pick up all the dirts and clean up the premises of Life Camp magistrate court for three hours under the supervision of the court registrar.’’
The magistrate also advised Muazu to relocate to his hometown in Kano or any other place where he can be meaningfully engaged and earn to meet his daily needs.