The former Chairman of the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties, Bayelsa State chapter, Mr. Sunday Frank-Oputu, and the state Coordinator National Anti-Corruption Volunteer Corps, Elizabeth Egbe, described the development as ‘shocking.’
Also, the former state Secretary of the Civil Liberty Organisation, Mr. Alagoa Morris, and the Coordinator, Forum for Justice and Human Rights Defence said Alamieyeseigha had done nothing to improve the economy of the country.
Frank-Oputu told Sunday Punch that there was no witch-hunt in the process that led to the conviction of Alamieyeseigha saying that the former governor was sentenced for looting public treasury.
He insisted that the pardon had demonstrated that the present administration was neck deep in corruption.
He insisted that it was not time for the former governor to be granted pardon, adding that Alamieyeseigha should have been allowed to remain a convict for over 10 years to serve as a deterrent to other potential offenders.
Frank-Oputu said, “With this pardon, it is clear that the fight against corruption is defeated. There is nothing good that will come out of the fight against corruption under Jonathan’s dispensation. It was in his dispensation that we saw a man who stole N32bn but was asked to pay N700,000 and go home.
“What impression is the Federal Government creating? It has told the world that President Jonathan is a real corrupt person and that he is not fighting corruption in its entirety.
“The crime for which Alamieyeseigha was sentenced to prison was not just a mere issue of somebody fighting for selfish interest. This was a man who deprived his own people of their own wealth and took everything in his possession as a governor”, he said.
He described as “blatant lies” the claims by Okupe that the former governor contributed to the peace in the Niger Delta region.
Also, Ikimi described as terrifying Okupe’s statement that Alamieyeseigha deserved the pardon having contributed to the growth of the country’s economy.
He referred to Okupe’s position as a “criminal infringement on the collective intelligence of Nigerians” insisting that the pardon should be reversed in the interest of good governance.
“More irritating is the comparison of DSP Alamieyeseigha’s pardon with the case of Chief Obafemi Awolowo, Chief Odumegwu-Ojukwu, the Americans granted pardon by two past US presidents. We make bold to say that there was no basis for such comparison,” he said.
Besides, Egbe who is the state coordinator of NAVC, an affiliate of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission said the pardon had rubbished efforts made by the commission to secure the convictions of Alamieyeseigha and other persons.
She said it was counterproductive for a country fighting corruption to reverse judgment it secured in the past against fraudulent persons.
She, however, said it was unfair to focus on Alamieyeseigha alone as some other persons included in the list of pardon did not deserve it.
Meanwhile, the All Nigeria Peoples Party has described Alamieyeseigha as a victim of circumstance, following the travails that led to his impeachment and imprisonment.
Former National Vice-Chairman of the ANPP, South-South Zone, Mr. Asukewe Iko-Awaji, said Alamieyeseigha, was victimised as a result of the ex-governor’s stance on former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s third term ambition.
Iko-Awaji explained that while many were made to believe that Alamieyeseigha was impeached and removed for corruption, the truth was that the ex-governor was victimised due to his unwavering position on Obasanjo’s political ambition.