NIGERIA: EDO STATE GOVERNOR GRANTS PARDON TO TWO PRISONERS, COMMUTES DEATH SENTENCE OF TWO OTHERS, BUT SIGNS DEATH WARRANTS FOR TWO DEATH ROW INMATES
October 18, 2012: In Nigeria, Edo State Governor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole granted amnesty to two prisoners condemned to death: 32-year-old Monday Odu, who was a minor when he was convicted in 1997 for murder, and 52-year-old Calistus Eke, who was sentenced for armed robbery in 1996.
The Governor also commuted to life imprisonment the death sentence of two others: Tijani Mustapha and Zubem Abduramma, who were both convicted for conspiracy and armed robbery.
Speaking after granting amnesty to Odu and Eke, Oshiomhole said: âWe have exercised the prerogative of mercy to release you from prison believing you have learnt your lesson. You can still be useful to society and useful to yourselves.â Odu and Eke were promised respectively N100,000 and N200,000 (about 600 and 1,200 USD) by the government to start their life over. âI hope you will be able to make something positive out of this your present condition,â the Governor said.
On 22 October, Governor Adams Oshiomhole announced that, on 26 September, he had commuted to life imprisonmentthe death sentence against another inmate, Olu Fatogun, convicted of armed robbery. He said: "The case of Olu Fatogun was reviewed by the Advisory Council on the Prerogative of Mercy and they recommended that his death sentence be affirmed and carried out, but I refused the prayers. Instead, I ordered that the death sentence be commuted to life imprisonment.â
Oshiomhole, however, noted that there are two other persons whose conviction he approved â Daniel Nsofor and Osayinwinde Agbomien.
He explained that Agbomien killed his victim, dismembered his body and buried the parts in different places to avoid detection, adding that when the convict was taken to court, he said his offence was a mistake but the manner in which he treated the body indicated that it was gruesome, premeditated and a wicked act.
On Nsofor, Oshiomhole said he approved his death sentence because after robbing his victim, a woman, of her possessions, he subjected her to horrendous torture and experience and thereafter killed her. (Sources: dailynews.gm, 18/10/2012; allafrica.com, 22/10/2012)