Minister of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, George Akume, has appealed to the Presidential Advisory Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy (PACPM) to be cautious in discharging their duties in order not to release unrepentant criminals back into the society.
Sen. Akume, who said this at the reconvening of the PACPM yesterday in Abuja, reiterated that any mistake on their part will cause more social problems in the country.
In a statement by his Deputy Director of Press, Osagie Jacob Julie, he said: “Mr. President will be relying on you as a Committee to do what is required of him constitutionally, to grant pardon to deserving Inmates, Convicts and Ex-convicts with the aim of decongesting the Correctional Centers nationwide”
The Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, who serves as the Chairman of the Committee noted that it became expedient for PACPM to reconvene as it has received over 320 applications for the grant of presidential pardon and clemency on behalf of some convicts in custodial conters across the nation.
Malaml, while formally reconvening the committee, wished them success in this second phase, and consequently called on them to review the applications objectively in the public interest and in the interest of justice.
He also cautioned them to review the applications based on facts before them.
Meanwhile, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs, Anthonia Ekpa, thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for constituting the Committee with the promised it would carry out the exercise with caution and justice.
Ekpa prayed that the committee will bring sunshine to those in correctional facilities who have been in darkness for a while.
According to her, “Until you are in darkness, you do not appreciate the rays of sunshine that you enjoy”
The committee is made up of Anthonia Ekpa, Ayoola Daniels, Usendiah Joseph, Shehu Gwarzo, Albert Uko, Auwal Yadudu, Debbie Obodoukwu, Lucy Ajayi, Joshua Abu, B Ogunbombi, and Yetunde Haastrup.
Jimqua Angela Ibiwori a Director in the Minstry of Special Duties and Intergovernmental Affairs serves as Secretary of the Committee.
The Presidential Committee on the Prerogative of Mercy was inaugurated on June 19, 2018.