‘He was never guilty’– Ambrose Alli’s family reacts to Buhari’s presidential pardon

April 10, 2020
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Andrew Alli, son of Ambrose Alli, says his family never believed that the late governor of the defunct Bendel state was guilty of any crime.

Andrew said this while reacting on behalf of his family to the posthumous presidential pardon granted his father by President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday.

Ambrose Alli was a medical professor who served as the first civilian governor of Bendel state between 1979 and 1983.

He was sentenced to 100 years in prison by a military tribunal during the military regime of Buhari for allegedly misappropriating N983,000 in funds for a road project.

He was later freed when Gabriel Igbinedion, Esama of Benin, paid a fine to the government.

He died on his 60th birthday on September 22, 1989, at the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH).

In a series of tweets on his official Twitter handle, Andrew said his family is yet to be officially informed of the development, adding that they only learnt of the pardon via social media.

He, however, thanked the president, for the gesture.

He also expressed gratitude to Godwin Obaseki, governor of Edo state, for acting as a catalyst to the development.

According to Andrew, the presidential pardon is a testimony to the fact that his father did no wrong “other than giving his all to improve the lot of the people of the former Bendel”.

“We are aware of the announcement concerning the pardon of my father, Professor Ambrose Alli, made by the Government, via its social media pages,” Andrew wrote.

“Although we are yet to receive any direct official communication on this matter, we are pleased to hear that our father/uncle/brother/grandfather has received a presidential pardon.

“We have never believed that he was guilty of anything, other than giving his all to improve the lot of the people of the former Bendel State and, indeed, Nigeria. This is demonstrated by the enduring legacy that he left.

“We thank his excellency, President Buhari, as well as his excellency Governor Obaseki, and all those who have supported the process inside and outside government, for their recognition of this fact.”

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