The Nigeria Correctional Service (NCoS) has dismissed report that Maryam Sanda had been granted presidential pardon.
The Service Public Relations Officer (SPEO), Mr Chuks Njoku, in a statement on Thursday in Abuja described the report as fake news.
“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 said 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.
“The Controller-General of NCoS, Mr Ja’afaru Ahmed, assures the public that the service will ensure the safety and humane containment of inmates in our custody,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Muhammadu Buhari had pardoned 2600 inmates across the country on April 9.
NAN reports that on Jan.27, an FCT High Court sentenced Sanda, who stabbed her husband to death, Bilyaminu, son of a former national chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, Haliru Bello, to death by hanging.