NIGERIAN GOVERNORS APPROVE EXECUTION OF CONVICTED PRISONERS
April 20, 2010: Nigeria's state governors backed the execution of more than 300 prisoners on death row to clear space in the overcrowded jails. "It was agreed that those people who have been condemned should be executed accordingly," said Theodore Orji, governor of the southeastern state of Abia, after a meeting of the 36 state governors in Abuja.
A total of 330 prisoners are on death row in a country where capital punishment remains on the statutes despite rarely being implemented.
The governors, who have the power to sign execution orders, said also that 80 percent of Nigeria's prison population is awaiting trial and efforts should be made to "leave go" those serving lengthy remands, according to Orji.
Koyode Odeyemi of the Nigerian Prisones Service told AFP that 36,000 of the 40,106 inmates are awaiting trial. (Sources: Agence France Presse, 22/04/2010)