Maryam Sanda not granted pardon – NCoS

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FILE: Warders and policemen shielding Maryam Sanda after her conviction and sentencing for killing her husband by the High Court of the FCT in Abuja…on Monday. Photo: Olatunji Obasa

Adelani Adepegba, Abuja
The Nigerian Correctional Service has refuted speculations that a death row inmate, Maryam Sanda, was granted presidential pardon last Thursday, alongside 70 other inmates of the Medium Security Custodial Centre, Kuje.
The NCoS said Sanda did not meet the requirements for the pardon, noting that she was still in custody and “will remain as such.”

Sanda was convicted and sentenced to death by a High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, in January, for killing her husband, Bilyaminu Bello.
Justice Yusuf Halilu said every available evidence had proved that Sanda fatally stabbed her husband to death in Abuja on November 19, 2017.
The NCoS spokesman, Deputy Controller of Corrections, Chuks Njoku, in a statement in Abuja on Thursday, said the condemned inmate did not fit into any of the categories of inmates who qualified for pardon as listed by the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.

The statement explained that the categories for the amnesty include, convicts who are 60 years and above; those serving three years and above with less than six months to serve; inmates with ill-health likely to terminate in death; inmates with mental ill-health and inmates with an option of fine not exceeding N50,000 with no pending case.
Others are convicted pregnant women and women with child, convicted inmates with minor offences and those who had spent 75 per cent of their sentence after remission.

Njoku stated, “It obvious that Maryam Sanda did not meet any of the above-mentioned requirements and therefore, did not benefit from the presidential pardon. We further want to assure the public that Maryam Sanda is in our custody and will remain as such.
“The Controller General of Corrections, Ja’afaru Ahmed, advises the public to discountenance the rumour that Sanda benefited from the presidential pardon.”

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