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Nigeria: Bode George's Guilt and the Logic of Deduction, By Adeolu Ademoyo

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Back to Ọlabọde George. For the benefit of fellow countrymen and women, lawyers, judges, common folks and those who still have time to care I will try to make digestible and readable in basic terms the basic thinking in deductive reasoning which the lower court relied on to justifiably convict the accused and inductive reasoning which the Supreme Court relied on to unjustifiably free them.

In deductive reasoning, you move from the general to the particular. For example a general statement is: (a) "Every mother is kind". A particular statement is: (b) "Bọla is a mother". From a and b I can deduce that (c) Bọla is kind. However, if I assert, that is say that (d) "Bọla is a mother and she is not kind" I will run into an assault against basic reason-this is what is called contradiction. Why? For me to say (d) "Bọla is a mother and is not kind" I have to deny a and b. But I have affirmed a and b, so I can no longer deny them without raising serious ethical questions. So (d) cannot stand before reason. And (c) is the judgment that can stand before reason.

The conviction of Mr. Ọlabọde George by honorable Justice Oyewọle follows legal pattern of a deductive reasoning for good laws are formulated in a way to prevent their abuse by accused, judges, lawyers and lay people. And to follow an inductive path in legal reasoning as the Supreme Court judges had wrongly done where the law under which the accused were tried is formulated (as a general law against abuse of office) to prevent such induction will be morally problematic and logically chaotic. I will show this presently.

But what the Supreme Court judges have just told Nigerians and the world through their inductive path is that there is nothing called abuse of office by rulers and politicians in Nigeria. With due respect to these judges, this is morally frightening and logically absurd.

The general statement of offense against Mr. Ọlabọde George under the law belongs to the (a) kind in our illustration. The particular belongs to the (b) kind in our illustration. To therefore depart from this as the Supreme Court has done in freeing Ọlabọde George and others of a general offense they are guilty of under the appropriate law is with due respect a war against law, basic reason and ethics. The Supreme Court followed an inductive path while giving the false impression that it is still faithful to the deductive path of the charge and conviction in the lower court. This is morally and logically unacceptable. The Bar and the Bench ought to take this up to save reason in the country if they wish.

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