Four convicts who had been on the death row were Monday executed by hanging in Benin City, capital of Edo State, south-south Nigeria.
The execution which took place in the premises of the Benin City Central Prisons, has however elicited condemnation from Amnesty International.
In a statement, the international human rights group, called on Nigerian government for restraint in carrying out the execution which it said was confirmed by a court yesterday in Benin City.Edo State Attorney General and Commissioner for justice, Henry Idahagbon, who confirmed the executions, said the convictions were got many years ago as far as the Supreme Court.
Idahagbon who could not confirm names of the executed criminals, said three of them were convicted outside the state, but have been in prison in Benin City, adding that the execution of the convictions was on the prison authorities who requested for the go ahead.
“I didn’t memories the names, but they are in the document forwarded to me in the office. If you come to me tomorrow, I can get them for you,” Idahagbon said.
There are eight condemned prisoners in Benin Prisons.
One of them is Edo state born Agbonmware Omorogie, who was convicted since 1994 and who exhausted his right of appeal at the Supreme Court of Nigeria.
Another death row convict is Cyracius Ogidi from Imo State, convicted for armed robbery by military tribunal since 1997
There is also ThanKGod Ebhos, from Kaduna State convicted for armed robbery by military tribunal since 1988.
Chima Ejifor convicted since August 1998 at the age of 27 has also exhausted his appeal at the Supreme Court.
Others are: Richard Igago, arrested in 1994 and convicted on 19-12-1995 by an Edo State High Court, Osarenmwinda Aiguokhian-arrested on 7-7-1993 and convicted for armed robbery by military tribunal on 18-1-1996, Daniel Nsofor-arrested in Edo State on 31-11-1992 and convicted on 19-6-1996 and Apostle Igene, from Delta State-arrested on 9-5-1997 and convicted for armed robbery by military tribunal in 1998 at the age of 28 with no right of appeal.
P.M. could not confirm from the attorney-general who out of the eight men were hanged Monday.
On claims that there was a stay of execution order, Idahagbon said his office got the stay of execution papers but that the execution was not to be carried out by his office.
Sources within the prison however confirmed that the fifth condemned criminals will be executed before Friday this week by firing squad.