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Ghanaian President Grants Amnesty To 794 Prisoners


President Akufo-Addo has granted amnesty to 794 prisoners as part of efforts to decongest the country’s prisons in the midst of COVID-19 pandemic.

“The President of the Republic, His Excellency Nana Akufo-Addo in consultation with the Council of State in Commemoration of Workers Day, May 1st, 2020 and in bid to mitigate the dangers posed by congestion in the prisons, especially in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic, has in accordance with Article 72(1) of the 1992 Constitution granted amnesty to Seven Hundred and Ninety-four (794) deserving prisoners.”

A statement signed by Director General of Prisons, Patrick Darko Missah, which gave the breakdown said 772 constituted first offenders while 16 were old prisoners (70 years and above) four were seriously ill.

“Two prisoners who were sentenced to death have been commuted to life imprisonment,” the statement added.

The statement said “The first offenders totaling 772 who have served at least half of their sentences, 16 very old prisoners and four seriously ill are to be released outright.

However, two prisoners on death row will have their sentences commuted to life imprisonment.
This is the second time that the President has granted amnesty in this year.

On March 26, the President in consultation with the Council of State and Ghana Prison Service Council and in accordance with the exercise of Executive Powers per Article 72(1) of the 1992 Constitution granted 808 prisoners amnesty.

Ghanaian prisons are notorious for overcrowding and with the call for social distancing in line with coronavirus prevention measures, it has become compelling to decongest some prisons.

Ghana as of June 2, 2020 had 18,741 confirmed cases of coronavirus, with 117 deaths.

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