The Senate on Wednesday appealed to the Central Criminal Court in the United Kingdom for clemency in the case of former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, and his wife, Beatrice.
The court had on March 23 convicted the couple and their doctor, Obinna Obeta, for organ trafficking.
The convicts would be sentenced on Friday.
The Senate resolution followed the adoption of a motion of privilege sponsored by Senator Chukwuka Utazi at the plenary in Abuja.
In his presentation, Utazi urged the British court to temper justice with mercy given the good standing of Ekweremadu.
Ekweremadu, according to him, made enormous contributions to the development of democracy in Nigeria, West Africa, and beyond.
He said: “Whereas the Senate is not happy with the conviction of the Ekweremadus though, ignorance of the law is not an excuse. But let me point out that the former deputy Senate president was desperate to save his ailing daughter, Sonia.
“This Senate is not in any way appealing to the conviction of the Ekweremadus’ nevertheless it is joining them in their plea by asking for clemency in the coming sentencing two days away.
“That clemency may be extended to the Ekweremadus considering that all the convicts are first-time offenders.
“That the since the matter was in the United Kingdom, a novel approach in the sentencing of the convicts be adopted by tempering justice with mercy, as the publicity already given to the trial was enough warning to the would-be offenders in the future.”
In his remark, the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, said: Distinguished Senator Ekweremadu served for 12 years as Deputy Senate President and he put in so much effort to the development of the Parliament across Africa and in the world.
“He was not found wanting and so what has happened is very unfortunate.
“I have written a letter to the British judicial authorities about three weeks ago on behalf of the Senate seeking for Clemency, given the history of Senator Ekweremadu.
“We are now using this particular intervention, to seek for clemency in the sentencing. The conviction has been done, but we are seeking clemency because this is the first time, our colleague, a patriot, a leader, a great leader, and a very peaceful man is getting involved in this kind of saga.”
The House of Representatives and the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS) Parliament had on Tuesday pleaded for leniency in the sentencing of the former deputy senate president by the court.
Join the conversation
Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism
Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.
As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.
If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.
Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.
ICYMI…SPECIAL REPORT: NNPCL hides behind PIA to frustrate disclosure, accountability
Nigeria’s major oil company, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation Limited (NNPCL), in what appears to be a common practice of disregard...
INVESTIGATION: Multi-million naira Ekiti resort center remains uncompleted a decade after
The multimillion-naira project, expected to comprise recreational buildings, now consists of cassava farmland, a bush used for excretion, and a...
SPECIAL REPORT: Torturous experiences of students with disabilities in Oyo tertiary institutions
For students with disabilities in Oyo state-owned tertiary institutions, learning is a torturous and distressing experience, considering the building structures...
INVESTIGATION: Uncompleted Old Enugu-Onitsha Road brings untold hardship, tears to commuters, residents of Enugu communities
Ugwu Obinna’s younger sister was killed after a truck driver transporting cows rammed into her shop located at the Okpatu...
INVESTIGATION: Students sit on floors, under leaking roofs as multi-million naira project is nowhere to be found in Zamfara
Suleman Tukur, 15, an SS 2 student of Government Day Secondary School (GDSS) Bakura in Bakura local government area of...