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Correctional Service clears air on Maryam Sanda benefitting from presidential pardon

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Correctional Service clears air on Maryam Sanda benefitting from presidential pardon

The Nigeria Correctional Service (NCoS) has distanced itself from reports that Maryam Sanda had been granted presidential pardon.

Recall that on Jananury 27, an FCT High Court sentenced Sanda, who stabbed her husband, Bilyaminuto, son of a former national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Haliru Bello, to death by hanging.

However, reports emerged on social media that Maryam Sanda was released after President Muhammadu Buhari pardoned 2,600 inmates across the country on April 9.

Reacting, the Service Public Relations Officer (SPEO), Mr Chuks Njoku, in a statement on Thursday, described the report as fake.
He said, “The attention of NCoS has been drawn to the news making the rounds that Maryam Sanda was granted presidential pardon on Thursday April 9, alongside some 70 other inmates at the Medium Security Custodial Centre, Kuje.

“The Service wants to categorically state that the news is fake and very unrealistic and an attempt to rubbish the good intention of the President towards decongesting the custodial centres.

“The Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola clearly stated the categories of inmates qualified for the amnesty while addressing a news conference on April 9.

“According to Aregbeshola, inmates sentenced for violent extreme offences such as terrorism, kidnapping, armed banditry, rape, human trafficking, culpable homicide and the like are not qualified for the Presidential Pardon.

“However, Convicts who are 60 years and above, convicts serving three years and above with less than six months to serve, inmates with ill-health likely to terminate in death are qualified.

“Also inmates with mental ill-health, inmates with option of fine not exceeding N50,000 with no pending case, convicted pregnant women, convicted women with child, convicted inmates with minor offences, convicted inmates who spent 75 per cent of their sentence after remission,” he said.

Njoku added that Sanda did not meet any of the mentioned requirements and therefore did not benefit from the Presidential pardon and clemency.

“We further want to assure the public that Sanda is in our custody and will remain as such.

He, therefore, assured the public that the service will ensure the safety and humane containment of inmates in our custody.

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