The Executive Director of Social Justice Advocacy Initiative (SJAI), Damian Ugwu, has described the sentence passed by an American court on Nigeria’s Umar Abdulmutallab as “good and fair”.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that Mr. Abdulmutallab attempted to blow up a Northwest Airliner on Christmas day in 2009.
He later pleaded guilty to the eight-count charge brought against him, including felony, attempted murder and use of weapon of mass destruction.
In her judgment on Thursday, American Judge Nancy Edmunds sentenced Mr. Abdulmutallab to life imprisonment without parole.
Mr. Ugwu, speaking with NAN on Friday, in Lagos, said that the judgment reflected the degree of crime which the convict committed.
“Considering that he had no remorse for what he did and would still be a threat to the society, if freed, the sentence was good.
“But we have lessons to learn here. He was never tortured by any security operative and the American police never resorted to third degree law enforcement style to get information from him,” he said.
Mr. Ugwu urged Nigerian security agencies to learn from the fair treatment and fair hearing which the Americans gave Mr. Abdulmutallab for a crime that could have fetched him the death sentence elsewhere.
“But it was also commendable that America did not resort to that type of justice,” he said.
The Director of Muslim Rights Congress (MURIC), Prof. Is-haq Akintola, said that the judgment could not be faulted.
Mr. Akintola said that considering the enormity of Mr. Abdulmutallab’s crime, the court made the right decision, having noted the convict’s acceptance of attempting to commit the crime.
He advised individuals, no matter their religion, to be moderate and embrace dialogue instead of violence.
The director also urged governments all over the world to learn from the fair judgment and treatment given Mr. Abdulmutallab during his trial.
Wilson Esangbedo, Executive Secretary of the Nigerian Institute for Industrial Security, said that the sentence should be a warning to terrorists, no matter where they were located, that they would face the law.
He said that the case would serve as a deterrent to would-be terrorists, whom he advised to desist from their violent plans.