24 December 2012

Liberia: President Pardons 33 Prisoners

President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf has granted executive clemency to 33 detainees held at the Monrovia Central Prison as part of her Christmas gesture of sharing with the Liberian people. Under the Constitution, the President of Liberia has the power to pardon a convicted or pre-trial detainee.

Those pardoned by President Sirleaf, during her visit to the Central Prison on Friday, December 21, included 8 females and 25 males who had been detained for various offenses ranging from theft of property, misapplication of entrusted property to disorderly conduct.

The president who was accompanied by Minister of Justice, Cllr. Christiana Tah, ordered the minister to ensure that those pardoned carry out community service as a way of paying back for their wrongdoing against community dwellers.

Those being pardoned chanted the praises of President Sirleaf, and assured her that her pardon would not be in vain as they will be "peace ambassadors" in their respective communities while they carry out their service.

The release prisoners had been in detention from one to three years. The President requested that some of those pardoned be turned over to the Acting Monrovia City Mayor, Mary Broh, for their service.

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