Joshua Dariye, a former governor of the Plateau, has claimed that prayers were instrumental in securing his freedom.

65-year-old Dariye also expressed gratitude to President Buhari for issuing him with a state pardon.

The politician was jailed in June 2018 for stealing N1.16 billion from the Ecological Fund after being investigated by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).

Dariye was found guilty of a criminal breach of trust involving N250 million that was given to Pinnacle Communications from the fund by Justice Adebukola Banjoko.

Three weeks earlier, the same judge had sentenced Jolly Nyame, a former governor of Taraba, to prison on corruption-related charges.

However, the Council of State, presided over by President Buhari, approved the freedom of the pair and numerous others in April 2022.

Four months after receiving clemency, Dariye was released from Kuje Correctional Center in Abuja in August.

When the former Plateau helmsman arrived in Jos, the country’s capital, on Wednesday, his supporters greeted him.

NAN reported him as saying, “I thank President Muhammadu Buhari for being magnanimous and granting us State pardon.”

“I also want to thank the Plateau people for their prayers and support throughout my struggle. This day would not have been possible without your prayers and support, he said.

The former senator for Plateau Central thanked God for bringing him back to his people.

Residents should make sure they obtain their permanent voter cards (PVCs) before the 2023 elections, Dariye advised.

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