GODFREY IMASUEN v. STATE (2014) LPELR – 22193 (CA) FACTS: The appellant Godfrey Imasuen was charged for the murder of a nine year old girl Favour Ihoeghilan, under Section 319(1) of the Criminal Code Laws of Bendel State of Nigeria, 1976. In defence he claimed that he was involuntarily intoxicated by inhaling the smoke of Indian hemp. And that it was caused by a group of boys at a canteen in Urora village on 5/4/03 and that he consequently became confused before he proceeded from there to Aduwawa Area Benin City from where he lured the deceased, Favour Ihoeghilan into a bush behind the cattle market, and raped her. The trial court after listening to the evidence adduced consequently convicted and sentenced the appellant. Dissatisfied, he sought to overturn the decision of the trial court. ISSUE: Whether a child is deemed a competent witness in law and under what circumstances will a child’s sworn testimony not be needed in criminal trials. JUDGEMENT: The court adopted the decision in Okon v. state (1988) 19NSCC 156, Dagayya v. State (2006) ALL FWLR (Pt.308) 1212 at pg. 1232-1233 alongside the provision in Section 154 and Section 182(1) and (2) of the Evidence Act in stating that a child is a competent witness unless the court considers the child in question to be prevented from understanding questions put to him by reason of tender years. The court further restated the position of the law that a child need not give sworn testimony if the child in the court’s opinion does not understand the nature of an oath but possesses sufficient intelligence to justify the receipt of his evidence and understands the duty of speaking the truth.