The former Delta state governor, James Ibori, has been released from prison. He was released on Wednesday, December 21 by a UK court.

The court order was that he should be released before his confiscation trial begins.

James Ibori's release stirs up controversy

The former governor’s release is causing division among Nigerians

His release is causing a stir on social media as Nigerians are reacting differently. Some are congratulating him while others are wondering why he was released.

Those congratulating and celebrating him

Mephman Henry wrote: “Welcome home!! Mr president, 2019 is around the corner!! The man with strong heart!! Make Nigeria great again!!”

Welcome home Lord Ibori…we welcome you back! We have tasted other governors, they can’t be compared to you. Welcome again Ododigborigbo1 of Africa,” another Facebook user user Otumudia O Paul wrote.

According to Ita Joseph, Ibori is not the worst criminal in Nigeria.

Call him names. But to me he will always belong to the Niger Delta. Many have done worse than him and are roaming free. Your situation was an executive disappearance from the political scene by you know who. A bad child will always have a spot in his father’s house. Welcome home Mr James ibori. And what a perfect time to be back. Niger Delta for life,” he said.

Another commenter, Adebola Mark said: “You may choose to call him criminal, but he remains the ogidigboigbo of his people. His 8years is still far better than his successors have done put together. The number of schools, roads built by this man can’t be matched by the ones spoilt by successive governments and even the ‘saints’ that have not been caught in other states. Ogidigboigbo of Africa, welcome.”

Some others are of the opinion that all Nigerian leaders are criminals.

Oba-Jonathan Elemi Rockmond wrote: “Why are you people condemning James Ibori? We should try and be sincere for once. All our leaders both past and present are born thieves. Odidigbogbo1, you are highly welcome sir!!”

Also commenting, Gbebikan Adeyemi said: “Those from the south don’t think. How many former northern governors have you seen being prosecuted for corruption? Does it mean they ain’t corrupt? These people shield their men and make mockery of the southern governors. And by now you should know ALL Nigerian politicians are crooked, none is a saint.”

Others are saying Nigerians are hypocrites celebrating high class criminals while they burn poor thieves alive.

Godspower Bassey wrote: “Enough of this! Enough of this! Enough of this nonsense!!! Aah Aah! How long must our high class thief go scot-free? An end must come to these nonsense. Can u imagine if poor man thieves they will burn him with tire or cut off his hand but the reverse is d case with high class thief of the nation’s money. Thief is thief there should be no special treatment. Please federal government should enact these law that anybody who steals (me i call am thief ole buruku for yoruba) from public funds should die by hanging. #Justice must prevail#”

Seun Anthony wrote: “Now this is why I know there is very little hope for this country, look at how people are celebrating a man who stole billions from his people, escaped and even dressed as a woman to hide, such shame and disgrace, until the no nonsense white people caught and jailed him for the small amount he brought into their country, yet these same Nigerians will see a hungry man steal, beat him to death and burn him up, I am sure God himself is tired of our stupidity! We are the ones doing ourselves!”

On his part, Yinka Igbaroola commented: “I wonder why Nigerians don’t welcome armed robbers home with the enthusiasm they welcome a politician that robbed them and their future generations. I have heard the argument that he is not the worse thief but does your culture all room for different levels of thievery?”

His sins will be washed away once he joins the All Progressives Congress. Watch out for 2019.

Hilary Ogar wrote: “Watch out, he will receive a hero’s welcome to Nigeria where he will be adopted as a saint to APC where the fangs of EFCC will no more have effect on him. Don’t be suprised to see his poster as the next presidential aspirant.”

Thou shall not judge.

The former governor born on August 4, 1959, was was sentenced to 13-year imprisonment by a United Kingdom court on corruption charges in April 17, 2012.

His release comes barely three days after report surfaced that Ibori was expected to return to Nigeria for the Christmas celebration. However, his spokesperson Tony Eluemunor issued a statement asking the public to disregard any talk of Ibori returning home anytime soon.

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