Barring any last minute change of mind, the Lagos State Government is set to execute the General Overseer of the Christian Praying Assembly, CPA, Chukwuemeka Ezeugo, a.k.a Rev. King, and others on death row in Lagos prisons.
The nation’s apex court had on 27 February, 2016 upheld the judgment of the Apeal Court which passed death penalty on King, saying the condemned cleric must die by hanging.
State Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Adeniji Kazeem at a ministerial press conference on Tuesday in Lagos, Southwest Nigeria said the state government was reviewing the matter and would make a decision very soon.
Kazeem said he visited prisons in the state recently on the instruction of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and prison officials drew his attention to the highhandedness of those on death row.
He said these condemned prisoners felt that they had certain rights which excluded them from being executed.
He said the prison officials complained bitterly about this and wanted the government to take action to remedy the situation.
“Very soon, you will see the action of this government on that issue. We are reviewing the case of Rev. King and others on death roll,” he said.
Kazeem, who said previous administrations had not deemed it fit to sign documents for the execution of convicts on death row, vowed that the Ambode administration was moving towards signing the documents to executive those on death row.
“Lots of people are on death row. Rev. King is not the only one on death row, it is on the instruction of Ambode that I visited the prisons recently and I discussed the issue with the prison officials and they expressed concern.
“We are moving in that direction of signing. The prison officials said we need to look at that seriously. Those on death row are beginning to think they have some rights. We are going to move in that direction, you will hear from me, but I will not tell you the exact date,” he said.
On the issue of Major Hamzat Al-Mustapha, Kazeem disclosed that the state government had re-opened the case, saying that government was putting machinery in motion to ensure that justice was done on the matter.
Al-Mustapha was fingered in the murder of the late Kudirat Abiola, but he won the case in the court. However, the court has given the state government the nod to reopen the case.