By Olasunkanmi Akoni
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Christmas Day, signed two Executive Orders, Commutation of Death Sentence of three convicted inmates to life and Grant of Clemency to six others who have been set free.
In a statement by the Chief Press Secretary, CPS to the Governor, Mr Gboyega Akosile, on Wednesday, the two Orders were expected to take immediate effect.
According to Akosile, the pardon was sequel to recommendation by the State Advisory Council on Prerogative of Mercy, following applications considered from convicted inmates under the Advisory Council on Prerogative of Mercy, Law 2015.
Upon due consideration, the council recommended the commutation of death sentences to life imprisonment, in respect of three convicted inmates who are: Muhammed Abdulkadiri, Moses Akpan and Sunday Okondo.
Six other inmates, who have already been set free from different correctional centres under clemency are: Bestman Dennar, Jimoh, Wasiu Augustine Opara, including three females; Folakemi Osin, Rebecca Danlandi, and Njoku Ogechi.
Speaking earlier on the two orders at the Cathedral Church of Christ, Marina, Lagos where he observed the Christmas day service with his family, Sanwo-Olu said Nigerians should return to God with hearts of gratitude for His protection over the country and Lagos State, saying, despite the numerous challenges facing the nation, ‘the state is growing stronger.”
The governor said the Christmas period is a season of reflection, blessings and gift. “As a nation as and as a State, it is only appropriate for us to count our blessings and reflect on those things that have happened to us in the course of the year and how we can improve them and be better citizens.
‘‘For us as a state, it is also a season of giving back, so I have also signed a small release of some convicts that we have in the various prisons; people who have been given death sentences have been reduced to life sentences and some who have been jailed for minor offences have also been given warning and have asked for them to be pardoned.’’
Sanwo-Olu, therefore, urged Lagos residents to continue to be law-abiding, advising the residents to do things in moderation.
“I want to send out a message to Lagosians that this is a season of peace. Let us live peacefully and do things in moderation. Let us understand that even while we are celebrating, we must do it with modesty and with a lot of decorum. Let us all remain peaceful, law-abiding and humble,” the governor stated.
The Executive Orders had since been delivered to the State’s Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Mr. Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), who is expected to deliver same to the Prisons Service for immediate action.