PRESS RELEASE ON THE STATE PARDON/RELEASE OF MR. CELESTINE EGBUNUCHE AND MR. ABU DENNIS ULUBEKA, THE OLDEST PRISONERS ON DEATH ROW IN NIGERIA

DATED 12th JUNE 2019

Centre for Peace and Conflict Management in Africa (CPMCM) and Rethink Africa Foundation (RAF) Welcomes the release of the centenarian and Nigeria’s oldest prisoners, Pa Celestine Egbohuche, who had been at the confines of Enugu Maximum Prison for over 19 years and he is about 101 years old. While Pa Abu Dennis Ulubeka has been on death row for 16 years he is 89 years old.

We at Centre for Peace wish to express our deepest joy for the release of Mr. Celestine Egbohuche and Mr. Abu Dennis Ulubeka they are among those whose cases we took up years back and we subsequently filed a case on their behalf at the ECOWAS Court.

We are thus happy that upon been served with our Court papers / commencement of hearing and numerous other pressures the government has finally pardoned them.

This is obviously a welcomed development and we urge other states to emulate this good gesture.

The Centre wishes to specially thank His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Edo State, Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki, as he has the approved the immediate and unconditional release of some other prison inmates on the recommendation of the Advisory Council on Prerogative of Mercy.” The freed inmates are “Abu Dennis Ulubeka (M); Tirimisiyu Adebayo (M); Tajudeen Fabiyi (M) and Olufemi Ajayi (M).”

And the Anambra government for granting reprieve to 7 prison inmates, “Charles Omowunmi (M); Kalu Ojeh (M); Mattew Idoko (M) and Robinson James (M).” Those whose death sentences have been commuted to life include, “Okechukwu Maraire (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Armed Robbery; Osamede Abbey (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Armed Robbery; Godwin Alao (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Murder; Monday Iyalekhue (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Murder and Osaretin Idehen (M) found guilty but insane for the offence of Murder and confined in prison subject to Governor’s overriding order.” Others are, “Omokefe Alao (M) found guilty for the offence of Murder and detained in prison at the pleasure of the Governor; Okechukwu Okafor (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of murder; Ifeanyi Okafor (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Armed Robbery and Sunday Odion (M) convicted and sentenced to death for the offence of Armed Robbery.

ABOUT US

Centre for Peace and Conflict Management in Africa (CPMCM) and Rethink Africa Foundation (RAF) are Nigerian registered Non-Governmental Organization with registration numbers 41552 and 114864 respectively with the sole aim of assisting the less privileged and providing legal services for inmates on death row in Nigeria, where possible among others. In strategic partnership with African Right Watch Ltd (RC 1348616 ) , African Peace Magazine Ltd ( RC 1219536) and Victory Chambers.( BN 2061101 ) They have all joined hands together to give hope to the hopeless. The NGO has been operating since 2010 in Nigeria and West Africa.

The Executive Secretary and Board members of Centre for Peace and Conflict Management in Africa in partnership with Rethink Africa Foundation paid a visit to some prisons in Nigeria. Where they got first hand report of the living condition of inmates.

It would be observed that the prisons are overcrowded and lacked the basic facilities.

In furtherance of the Hope for The Hopeless Project the NGO identified about 350 critical cases needing urgent judicial intervention.

It would be recalled that the NGO had earlier in the year successfully secured a favorable judgement from the ECOWAS Court in the case of Gabriel Inyang and Linus Iyeme v Federal Republic of Nigeria (ECW/CCJ/APP/03/18) where the Court Ordered the immediate release of the two Applicants after spending about 17 years on death row.

In continuation of the project the NGO is happy to announce that we have about nine (9) cases currently pending at the ECOWAS Court since early 2018 in addition to several others still pending in various National Courts.

Brief Statement

  1. OZIOMA AZORYEME; a female who was sentenced to death at the age of 16 years old and has been on death row for about 8 years now, she has lived under extremely dehumanizing condition which has now affected her health, currently at Suleja Prision Niger State.
  2. DANIEL AKAKA; a male adult and is presently on death row in Warri Prison, for about 28 years now, he has undergone torture and extremely inhuman conditions. He has lived daily in fear not knowing when and at what time he would be executed. This has made him to develop serious medical conditions.
  3. MARY BAHAGO; a female, 48 years old, is presently on death row in Suleja Prison, for about 20 years now, she has undergone torture and extremely inhuman conditions. She has lived daily in fear not knowing when and at what time she would be executed. This has made her to develop high blood pressure and other serious medical conditions.
  4. OLANREWAJU AKOGWU; a male adult and he is presently on death row in Warri Prison, for about 17 years now, he has undergone torture and extremely inhuman conditions. He has lived daily in fear not knowing when and at what time he would be executed. This has made him to develop serious medical conditions.
  5. IFEANYI CHUKWU AKOIBI; Male, has been on death row for more than 16 years now. Sentenced to death for Armed Robbery. He has been moved from prison to prison, currently been held at Suleja prison Niger State, Nigeria. He equally has health challenges.
  6. IBRAHIM FARI SHAFIU; Male, has been on death row for about 9 years now. He was convicted by the High Court in Okene Kogi State on a charge of murder and sentenced to death by hanging on a forced and uncorroborated confessional statement, without any form of identification parade. No witness at all, rather he was just picked up on the street and forced to confess and sentenced to death. He has lived daily in fear not knowing when and at what time he would be executed. This has made him to develop high blood pressure and other serious medical conditions. He has been moved from Kaduna prison, Port Harcourt Prison, Enugu Prison, Kebbi Prison and now Suleja Prison.
  7. ABU DENNIS ULUEBEKA; Male, He is 89 years old and has been on death row for 16 years now. He was convicted and sentenced to death by hanging. He has serious medical condition, His medical report was attached to the Court processes filed in Court. He is currently being held at Kikiri prison Lagos State Nigeria. He has serious health challenges.
  8. MATTHEW ISABU; Male and has been on death row in Kiriki prison for about 17 years now. He had a flight with his colleague and was court-martialed and subsequently sentenced to death. He has serious health challenges.
  9. CELESTINE EGBUNUCHE; Male and is the oldest Nigerian on death row, He is 101 years old and has been on death row for more than 18 years . He is on death row with his son a 42 year old Man by the name Paul Egbunuche. Both of them were convicted on a trumped up charge of kidnapping in a matter emanating from land tussle. They both have serious health challenges.

PARTICULARS OF PENDING CASES AT ECOWAS COURT

  1. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of OZIOMA AZORYEME V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/47/18.
  2. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of DANIEL AKAKA V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/44/18.
  3. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of MARY BAHAGO V Federal Republic of Nigeria, With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/45/18.
  4. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of OLANREWAJU AKOGWU V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/46/18.
  5. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of IFEANYI CHUKWU AKOIBI V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/05/19
  6. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of IBRAHIM FARI SHAFIU V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/06/19
  7. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of MATTHEW ISABU V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/29/18
  8. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of ABU DENNIS ULUEBEKA V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/42/18
  9. The Incorporated Trustees of Centre for Peace and Conflict Mgt in Africa and Rethink Africa Foundation on behalf of CELESTINE EGBUNUCHE V Federal Republic of Nigeria. With Suit No ECW/CCJ/APP/08/19

FOR PARTNERSHIP / SPONSORSHIP / FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

Kindly call the Executive Secretary Directly or send a mail to centreforpeaceinafrica@gmail.com or you can donate online https://centreforpeace.org/donate-now/

“We make a living by what we get, But we make a life by what we give” Winston Churchill

Be a part of this life transformation project. Thanks
Mrs. Abosede Ajare
Executive Secretary/Board Member
+2347064979734
www.centreforpeace.org

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