Governor Adams Oshiomhole of Edo State has said that he would sign the death warrants of convicts who killed their victims.
Oshiomhole said this in Benin on Thursday when members of the Conference of Non-GovernmentalOrganisations, CONGOs, paid him a courtesy visit.
He said that signing convicts’ death warrants was a signal to other criminals that the state will not condone any form of criminality, adding that the non-execution of convicted criminals in the last 15 to 20 years had not led to reduction in criminality in the state.
“There are seven convicts whose cases are being reviewed. I will sign the death warrant of any of them, especially kidnappers, found to have killed any of their victims. I believe that those who kill by the sword should also die by the sword,” he told his guests.
On July 23, Oshiomhole signed the death warrants of four criminals. Three of them have been executed by hanging in Benin. The governor’s action was seriously criticized by anti-capital punishment advocates.
The governor also said that his government is considering a proposal to give life imprisonment to kidnappers who release their victims unharmed and without raping them.
He pointed out that the girl-child marriage was not an issue in the state, but that if the need arose, his government would make a law to protect the girl-child from underage marriage.
Earlier, the President of CONGOs, Jude Obasami, said although civil society groups condemn kidnapping and other crimes, Edo government should apply “human face” with regards to signing death warrants.