RULING: In the course of giving evidence in Chief, CW 1, identified a document pleaded in paragraph 5 of the statement of facts titled ‘‘CHELSEA HOTEL, ABUJA, OUTSTANDING STAFF SALARIES GRATUITIES AND ALLOWANCES OF THE UNDERLISTED STAFF FOR THE PERIOD OF MAY, 2009 TO JUNE 2013’’. The document was prepared by the witness himself, from facts within his personal knowledge and from the facts, documents and other relevant information that were made available to him by the other Claimants in this suit. However, when Counsel for the Claimants sought to tender the said document in evidence, Mr. O. A. Atolagbe Counsel for the 2nd Defendant objected to the admissibility of the document. The ground for the objection is that the document was prepared in year 2015 during the pendency of this suit. Counsel referred to section 83(3) of the Evidence Act in support of his submission. Counsel also cited NBC PLC V UBANI (2014) 4 NWLR (Pt.1398) 421 and submitted that since the document was prepared during pendency of this suit it is not admissible. Counsel also referred to section 37(a) of the Evidence Act and submitted that the document is hearsay and the law prohibit admitting hearsay evidence. On this submission Counsel relied on the case of JAMB V ORJI (2008) 2 NWLR (Pt.1072) 557 @ 569-570. Mr. Somina John-Bull, Counsel for the 3rd Defendant also objected to the admissibility of the document. Counsel adopted the argument of Counsel for the 2nd Defendant on section 83(3) of the evidence Act and went on to add that the only exception is in respect of document prepared by expert. Counsel submitted the witness in this case is not an expert. Counsel also submitted that the document is not admissible under section 83(1) (a) for the document to be admissible the maker must have personal knowledge or must have information recorded in the course of duty to be performed. Counsel referred to paragraph 8 of the witness statement on oath and submitted that the witness did not have knowledge of the content of the document and the information not recorded or obtained in the course of duty. The document according to counsel is hearsay and inadmissible in evidence. Counsel urged the Court to reject the document. In response to the objections of Counsel for the 2nd and 3rd Defendants, Mr. Chris Ubogu, Counsel for the Claimant submitted that paragraph 3 is the basis of the document. On the objection to the admissibility of the document Counsel submitted that the objection was grossly misconceived and did not reflect true position of the law. Counsel submitted the document form part of pleading, it shows how each Claimants were employed and his/her outstanding salaries being claimed and their respective severance allowances each claimant is making in this suit. Counsel submitted the document sought to be tendered is not extraneous it form part and parcel of the Claimants case. Counsel also submitted, if that computation has not been done the pleadings will run into several pages. Counsel submitted the document is relevant and admissible. Counsel also submitted that the cases cited by the defence are not applicable. Counsel submitted it is to avoid springing surprises and in the interest of fair hearing. Counsel went on to argue that the defendants have copies of the document and the document is not hearsay as submitted by the defence they are not contrary to section 37(a) of the evidence Act. It is argued by Counsel that the argument of defence on this section is misconceived. Counsel referred to paragraph 3 & 8, as well as paragraph 2 of additional statement of 3/3/16 and submitted the document was made based on personal knowledge and based on information, facts and documents given to the witness by the other Claimants in this suit. It is the contention of Counsel that the information in the document cannot amount to hearsay. Counsel submitted the law regarding affidavit evidence is clear as provided in section 115(4) of the Evidence Act. Counsel urged court to admit the document in evidence for being relevant. In reply on point of Law Counsel for the 2nd Defendant submitted that the claimant missed the point of argument. Counsel submitted the whole argument was not on front loading and relevancy. Counsel cited DUMALIN INV. LTD BGL (2016) 18 NWLR (Pt.1544) 262 @ 242CA held front loading does not affect admissibility. Counsel also submitted section 115(4) Evidence Act cannot save the Claimant, the section relate to affidavit and this case is not being heard on affidavit evidence. Counsel urged the court to reject the document. Counsel for the 3rd Defendant in reply on point of law submitted relying on section 83(3), the mere fact that the document was pleaded is not extenuating factor. Counsel submitted contrary to the submission of Counsel for the Claimant, there are three grounds for admissibility first relevancy, document must be pleaded and admissible under evidence Act. Lastly, Counsel contended that trying to equate witness statement on oath with affidavit which is not true position, cannot help the case of the Claimants. Counsel contended an affidavit is not hearsay; therefore, it is incorrect to equate affidavit and witness statement on oath. Counsel urged the court to reject the document. I have carefully examined the document sought to be tendered in evidence vis-à-vis the pleadings filed before the Court. I have equally attentively listened to submissions of Counsel for both parties for and against the admissibility of the document sought to be tendered in evidence and appreciated same. There is no doubt that the objections raised by the Counsel for the 2nd and 3rd Defendants is in respect of section 83(3) of the Evidence Act 2011. The section provide as follows:- ‘‘Nothing in this section shall render admissible as evidence any statement made by a person interested at a time when proceedings were pending or anticipated involving a dispute as to any fact which the statement might tend to establish’’. It is clear and unambiguous that the provisions of section 83(3) of the Evidence Act, reproduced above, excludes documents made in anticipation of litigation by a person not personally interested in the result of the litigation. See NISTFMB V KLIFCO NIGERIA LIMITED (2010) 13 NWLR (PT.1211) 307. In UTC NIGERIA PLC V LAWAL (2014) 5 NWLR (PT.1400) 221, the Supreme court defined ‘‘a person interested’’ as a person who has a personal interest, financial, material or otherwise in the outcome of the proceedings. It does not render admissible an evidence of statement made by a person interested at a time when proceedings were pending or anticipated, involving a dispute as to any fact, which the statement might tend to establish. See OKECHUKWU V INEC (2014) 17 NWLR (PT.1436) 255. The question to ask, is CW 1, an interested parson. Going by the definition given by the Supreme Court in the case quoted above, CW 1, who is the maker of the document sought to be tendered in evidence is an interested party in this case. The proof of this can be found in the testimony before the Court where he informed the Court that he is the 20th Claimant in this case. The pleadings of the Claimants also bear witness to this fact. In the circumstance CW 1, is an interested party in this case being one of the persons to benefit from the outcome of this litigation. From the pleadings before the Court, CW 1, has financial interest in the claim for salaries and gratuity. The document sought to be tendered in evidence having been prepared and signed by CW 1, on 17/4/15 during the pendency of this suit is caught by the provisions of section 83(3) of the Evidence Act 2011. It is therefore not admissible in evidence for having violated the provisions of extant evidence Act. The issue of relevancy of the document and its having been pleaded can only come to the aid of the Claimants, if and only if, the document is in law admissible. However, having found that the document is not admissible in law its relevancy and being pleaded come to naught. It is also my view that the paragraphs 3 and 8 of the witness statement on oath as well as paragraph 2 of the additional statement on oath cannot aid the case of the Claimants. The reason being that witness statement on oath and provisions of sections 115(4) being relied upon by the Claimants are not on the same pedestal. The witness statement on oath is based on procedural Rules of Court while the provisions of section 115(4) is based on extant statutory law. In any event the law applicable to witness statement on Oath and the law applicable to affidavit evidence are not same. The affidavit evidence though hearsay is saved by the extant law. While the witness statement cannot be excluded from the applicability of the evidence Act. Since this suit is not being fought on affidavit evidence, the Claimants are bound to comply with provisions of the evidence Act in proof of their case. The courts have consistently held that a witness statement on oath is different from an affidavit evidence. An affidavit is a statement of fact which the maker or deponent swears to be true to the best of his knowledge. It is a court process in writing deposing to facts within the knowledge of the deponent. It is documentary evidence which the court can admit in the absence of any unchallenged evidence. On the contrary witness statement on oath is not evidence. It only become evidence after the witness is sworn in court and has adopts his statement. At the stage of adoption witness statement on oath at best becomes evidence in chief. It is thereafter subjected to cross-examination after which it becomes evidence to be used by the court. See OKE V OGUNBIADE (2011) LPELR -3897(CA), OKPA V IREK & ANR. (2011) LPELR – 8033(CA). As at now, since the witness has not been cross-examined to test the veracity of the evidence contained in the witness statement on oath his testimony is yet to crystallize to evidence to which the court can use. In view of the foregoing, as a general principle document made by a person interested when proceedings are pending or is anticipated are not admissible. This exclude document made by a person who is not personally interested in the outcome of the litigation. The disqualification relate to only person personally interested. ANISU V OSAYUMI 2008 15 NWLR PT.1110 246, PETERSIDE V WAHARA (2011) 6 NWLR (Pt.1243) 328. In final analysis, coupled with my finding that the document sought to be tendered in evidence was made during the pendency of this suit and the maker is an interested person in the outcome of this litigation, the document is therefore by virtue of the provisions of section 83(3) of the evidence Act in admissible. It is hereby marked tendered and rejected. Sanusi Kad, Judge.