The centenarian and Nigeria’s oldest prisoner, Pa Celestine Egbohuche, who had been at the confines of Enugu Maximum Prison for over 19 years has finally regained freedom.
Pa Celestine was released on Thursday to his only surviving daughter, Chisom Celestine, through a non-governmental organisation, Global Society for Anti-corruption which had been pushing for his release at the Enugu Prison.
He hails from Amachara-Owerre, Akokwa in the Ideato North Local Government Area of Imo State, and was condemned to death along with his son, Paul, and another relation, who is now 87 years old.
However, his release came following several media campaigns championed by GSAC that no country of the world had a centenarian in prison custody. The organisation demanded that Pa Celestine should be granted pardon.
Following the pressure, Governor Rochas Okorocha, last week granted the centenarian a state pardon.
Though his release came with mixed feelings among his kinsmen.
Hear his story.
Pa Celestine is from Akokwa, He was a very religious and pious looking man. He was the Church Warden at St David Church Owerre Akokwa. He was loved by the parishioners as quiet and pious.
He had a brother popularly known as ANAKU who was based in Port Harcourt. He also has a son called Paul. It was Anaku who trained Paul in PH and settled him as a businessman.
So sometimes in the late 1990s, Pa Celestine had a misunderstanding with Anaku over their family land which was their inheritance. The issue was however settled by the family. Pa Celestine, however, felt bitter about giving his brother part of the family land.
So when Anaku came home from his base in PH, Pa Celestine invited him to a nearby bush to show him something and Anaku innocently followed not knowing that Pa Celestine has planned with Paul his son to waste him.
Pa Celestine and Paul killed Anaku, cut him into pieces and buried him in a shallow hole earlier dug for that purpose.
They would have been successful and nobody would have suspected the quiet and Pious looking warden of such heinous crime against his younger brother but for a palm wine tapper who saw everything from the top of his palm tree and reported accordingly.
Pa Celestine and his son Paul was arrested and his kinsmen burnt down his house in anger.
He has lost everything including the lands he killed his brother for.
PA Celestine will clock 101 by August 4, 2019.