NCS opens up on how Sylva’s running mate was released from jail


The Nigeria Correctional Service has declared a former ex-militant leader and deputy governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress for the November 11 polls in Bayelsa State, Joshua Maciver, free.

The agency said Maciver had no pending prison sentence obligations.

There had been reports that Maciver, before his emergence as the running mate of the APC governorship candidate, Timipre Sylva, was sentenced over a criminal offence but he had yet to complete his jail term.

The reports also indicated that he was not among the Niger Delta militants that were granted amnesty following proclamation by the Federal Government.

But in a leaked document titled ‘To whom it may concern’, the Controller-General of Corrections, Haliru Nababa, clarified that Maciver was granted amnesty alongside other Niger Delta militants by the late President Umaru Yar’Adua.

Nababa, in the letter dated February 2,  2022, and addressed to Benjamin Ogbara, the lawyer to Maciver, said the amnesty proclamation ended Maciver’s prison sentence at the Kaduna Prisons.

The controller-general also attached the official gazette containing the amnesty proclamation and other relevant documents to prove that Sylva’s running mate was cleared of all offences.

It was gathered that Maciver, prior to the amnesty proclamation, was convicted and thrown into the Kaduna prisons for mounting pressure on an oil company operating in his community to provide basic amenities for his people.

The document read, “This is to confirm that Mr. Joshua Maciver, who was serving a prison sentence in Kaduna Prisons following his conviction in charge number FHC/KD/119C/2004, on the 26th of February, 2006, was granted amnesty alongside other Niger Delta militants by President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua.

“This is pursuant to the Amnesty Proclamation dated the 25th of June, 2009 in exercise of the powers vested on the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria under section 175 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

“He is, therefore, no longer under any legal obligation to continue to serve the prison sentence.