By Mwalimu FUH- NGWA**
“To say of what is that it is not, or of what is not that it is, is false, while to say of what is that it is, and of what is not that it is not, is true’. Here Aristotle is referring to the underlying things that make an assertion true. These things often referred to as pragmata must be logically structured incidences or facts. In prehistoric Greek, Truth was often linked to discussions involving geometry, logic, mathematics and natural philosophy.
The falsification of truth in our Courts of Law where truth is supposed to be respected most is the fundamental premise from which false deductions are made thus leading to prejudice. What justification could be accorded to a plaintiff and a defendant in the court of law for using lawyers if not in an utmost attempt to falsify truth given that only one party is supposed to be right in a given judgment after speaking the truth? Is one of the lawyers therefore someone who has so much respect for the truth that he seldom uses? One may advance that the law (human rights) allows both parties to lawyers and is the same Human right that frowns at injustices from fallouts of the court .We are witnesses to all these mishaps and can therefore not continue to be at armrest as there is injustice in the notion of truth.
A competent court can not for illustration accept couples to sign for polygamy implying that only the husband has the right to marry more than one wife. Polygamy, the opposite of monogamy is a compound word which could be broken down into polyandry, a custom depicting a woman legally married to more than one husband where as polygyny gives only the husband the responsibility to marry many wives. The truth is that polygamy gives right both to the bride and bride groom to go in for multiple partners otherwise if a man wants to marry more than one wife , he should go in for polygyny and not polygamy. Women in polygamous homes should take up this as a challenge. There is nothing like Cameroon context of defining words for dictionaries are there for all of us to verify.
Many theories therefore have been advanced by scholars in a bid to define truth which leaves an inquisitive mind pondering more. Dictionaries have not helped much. Few words which attempt to define truth for instance are facts, exactness, precision and legitimacy. The debacle remains whether a fact as seen by many from the point of logic at any given point in time is necessarily the truth. Long ago it was a known fact (Truth) by many people that the world was flat until Galileo came up with the heliocentric theory proving the contrary. What are the ingredients of a fact therefore that makes it absolutely true? In the courts of law what is referred to as facts are hoax for the ingredients that qualify a fact to be true and can stand the test of time are mere assumptions. They are not properly verified thus the injustices recorded in proclamation of presidential election results in most African countries. Could there be any other palpable raison d'être to substantiate injustice in courts if not for the fact that truth is being distorted through illogical conclusions? Can we conveniently say that the adage that truth is stranger than fiction implying things that actually happen are often more surprising than stories that are concocted true?.
Truth from traditional scrutiny is very powerful and can be analogous to an inflatable immersed in water. No matter how one compels it underneath the water, it will barely resist to be out. Truth therefore can not be immersed in a pool of falsehood no matter how long it takes or one tries to entwine it as it is the case in courts. Today many a people often swear in court and formulate tales there after which are considered as facts by others who equally take an oath of office to base their judgments on absolute truth. ‘But we ought to consider that the more closely and ingeniously men reason from false principles, the more absurdities they will be led into, and when such absurdities help to bring to light the false principles from which they are drawn, they may be more easily forgiven…. Thomas Reid
Judgments in courts can take the form of material, formal and transcendental truths. A judgment has material truth if its observation is based on intuitive perceptions that are generated from sensations. If a judgment has its reason or ground in another judgment, its truth is said to be logical or formal. If a judgment, of, for example, pure mathematics or pure science, is based on the forms (space, time, causality) of intuitive, empirical knowledge, then the judgment has transcendental truth.
Where then can one find the truth? Not in courts and churches but in the mind where conscience describes the inner felt criterion of what is right and wrong . The act of speaking the truth is an art that must be learned by all. Others are gifted in lies telling but must note that liars should have very good memories. The advantage of speaking the truth is that one is more likely to be sound.
It is no news that justice is being bought and sold in courts to the highest bidders. It ought not to be mere assumptions as it is the status quo. If judgment must be fair and thus embody the expression of knowledge which stands for the truth, it must have sufficient reasons and grounds on which it must be accepted. Judgment in our courts of Law therefore must be a permutation or severance of two or more concepts properly verified which precedes absolute truth. This will be a fundamental pedestal for a better tomorrow that is injustice free which is a pavestone for justice yearn by all. An injustice any where is a threat to justice every where. What affects one directly affects others indirectly.**Mwalimu FUH- NGWA is a Contributor to VOTO(Voice Of The Oppressed). He is a free thinker and critic.