The Gambia May Beat America to Ending the Death Penalty

By Keenan, Jillian | Reason, June 2018 | Go to article overview

The Gambia May Beat America to Ending the Death Penalty


Keenan, Jillian, Reason


NO ONE WARNED ThankGod Ebhos that he was going to die that night, but he knew without words. For 19 years, as he suffered on death row in Nigeria's notorious Benin Prison for the crime of armed robbery, Ebhos had waited for this moment. So when the sound of his cell door opening awoke him from a restless sleep on June 24, 2013, the smell of freshly oiled gallows told him what the prison guards did not.

Without a word, the guards forced Ebhos and four others out. All were set to die that night. Since he was No. 5, he watched as, one by one, each of the men before him gasped for life and died at the end of the executioner's rope. (The prisoners were killed despite the fact that each had an appeal pending at the time.) When Ebhos was up, the guards put a black bag over his face, chained his hands behind his back, and tied a bag of sand to his feet. They put the noose around his neck.

Then someone spotted a clerical error.

Unable to see through the black fabric, the rope still wrapped around his throat, he listened as the prison guards squabbled over the problem: Ebhos had been sentenced to die by firing squad, not hanging.

After long minutes, the execution was postponed. "They removed the rope from my neck, but I never knew that I was still alive," he says. "Even now, talking to you, it seems I am dreaming."

Nigeria's death penalty has always been terrifying, and it is poised to get even worse. In 2017, the Senate approved death sentences for kidnapping--expanding the list of capital crimes that, like ThankGod Ebhos' robbery, do not involve murder.

"Nigeria is the 'bad guy' of West Africa at the moment," says Oluwatosin Popoola, a lawyer and death penalty adviser for Amnesty International. "It seems politicians in the country feel the death penalty is the solution to all problems."

There is even growing support in Nigeria to impose death sentences for speech "crimes." A new bill, which seeks to impose "death by hanging" on people found guilty of any form of hate speech that allegedly results in someone's death, just passed its second reading in the Senate. (The bill would also punish ethnic or racial harassment with a five-year jail term or a fine of 10 million naira, equal to about 27,800 U. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

The Gambia May Beat America to Ending the Death Penalty
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.