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Chief Justice pardons 80-year-old man and 11 other Akwa Ibom detainees

Akwa Ibom State Chief Justice, Justice Ekaette Obot, on Thursday released 12 inmates, including an 80-year-old man, from Ikot Abasi and Eket Correctional Centres.

Three were from Ikot Abasi Correctional Center, while nine were from Eket Correctional Center and had been awaiting trial for one to five years.

Before granting clemency to the detainees, the Chief Justice reportedly went through all the records at both Ikot Abasi and Eket during an inspection of the facilities and said their stay in the centers without trial was sufficient punishment for the minor offenses with which they were charged. and ordered that they be released unconditionally.

Obot also released some for humanitarian reasons and others for lack of prosecution.

An inmate named John Akpan from Ikot Abasi Correctional Center, accused of stealing a bunch of plantains from his uncle’s plantation, had been in custody for over 12 months. He was pardoned by the Chief Justice and asked to behave himself.

The Chief Justice also pardoned an 80-year-old man, Ime Udoh, from Eket Correctional Centre, who could barely walk, and his son James Ime, accused of disobeying a court order.

Goodnews Isaiah, charged with assault and held for more than 12 months without trial, was unconditionally released by the Chief Justice, who also urged him to behave himself.

Ime William, also from Ikot Abasi Correctional Centre, was charged with conspiracy and had been in custody for over three years and was released and acquitted.

The Chief Justice noted that some released detainees had spent more years in prison than the sentence for the offense they were charged with, while some had been in detention centers for five years without being brought to trial.

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