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Appeal Court reduces ex-govs Dariye, Nyame jail terms

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Sentenced to 10 and 12 years respectively 

•Jolly Nyame ordered to pay a fine of N500m

Jude Johnson 

The Federal Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja has reduced the 14 years jail sentences handed over to the former governors of Plateau, Sen. Joshua Dariye and Taraba State, Rev. Jolly Nyame, to 10 and 12 years respectively.

Dariye and Nyame were in June 2018,  sentenced at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Gudu, Abuja, presided by Justice Adebukola Banjoko, on charges of criminal breach of trust and criminal appropriation of the state’s funds

Dariye was serving a 14-year jail term on account of corruption charges that arose from mismanagement of ecological funds before the appeal court ruling.

The aappellate court  explained the serving Senator should have been sentenced to 10 years even though the initial conviction was right.

According to the Court, the sentence was reduced due to what the court termed “criminal breach of trust” while a similar conviction for the diversion of N1.62 billion ecological funds was reduced from two years to one year.

The sentences are to run concurrently, meaning that has been effectively jailed for 10 years.

The appeal court ruled that the lower court erred in law when it sentence Dariye , a first-time offender, to the maximum 14 years term contained in the charge against him.

The court further explained the sentence was passed during the season of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act which does not allow maximum sentence for first-time offenders.

The ex-governor was convicted on 15 out the 23 counts preferred against him in July 2007.

In the same vein, Nyame who was initially sentenced to a 14-year jail term for various crimes whose penalties were to run concurrently has now been reduced to 12 years.

The Appeal Court also ordered the ex-governor to pay a fine of N495 million for alleged misappropriation of funds while he was governor of Taraba State from 1999 to 2007.

It however, said the law compels the court to add a fine for each of the various convictions.

The appellate court also said Nyame ought to have been given a capital punishment, but for the constitutional constraint on the court to stick to the provisions of the law.

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