The Delta State Governor, His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, has approved the grant of total pardon to 5 inmates who were serving various terms of imprisonment and commuted 30 others on death row to life imprisonment in the exercise of his Prerogative of Mercy under Section 212 of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended).
A statement released from the Office of the Honourable Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Peter Mrakpor stated that the Governor acted pursuant to powers vested on him in exercise of his powers of prerogative of mercy in the spirit of the Easter celebration and took into considerations the several international and local pleas including those from Amnesty International.
The Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice explained that the Governor acted in accordance to his constitutional powers based on the recommendations of the 7-Man Advisory Council on the Prerogative of Mercy headed by Chief Patrick Okpakpor that was inaugurated by the Delta Governor on 30th March 2017.
According to the statement, the Governor approved the grant of full pardon to the following inmates and ordered their immediate release; Livinus Ugwu (M) who was sentenced to 20 years, Enebeli Dike (M), a condemned convict, Orji Pascal (M), serving a 10 year jail term, Moses Agedah who was also on death row and Martins Ishiekwene, a prisoner sentenced to death on the 30th of November, 1998.
The 30 inmates whose sentences were commuted by the Governor were all death row inmates, sentenced to death by hanging.
The statement further stated that the Senator Dr Ifeanyi Okowa’s administration was irrevocably committed to better the lives of the people including prisoners as the Government has come out with various rehabilitation programmes through skill acquisitions, trainings and other empowerment programmes geared towards their reintegration back to society.
Furthermore, the Prison Authorities have been advised appropriately in the warrants of pardon signed by His Excellency, the Governor, to immediately effect the warrants of release and commutal respectively.