Umaru Abdul-Mutallab, the father of Umar Faoruk Abdul-Mutallab, who was convicted and handed multiple life sentences in the United States (U.S.A) for an attempted terror attack, has said he wished to see his son.
Abdul-Mutallab was convicted in 2012 for an attempted terror attack on a Northwest Airlines Flight 253, after he was found with an underwear strapped with explosives.
He was sentenced to four life terms plus 50 years without parole and incarcerated at ADX Florence, the Supermax Federal Prison in Colorado, U.S.
His father, who is the chairman of Jaiz Bank, said he believed that his son, who has been kept incommunicado over the years, would have been remorseful.
He spoke on Tuesday at the office of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) in Yaba, Lagos, at an event organised by the Human Rights Monitor Agenda (HURMA) to commemorate the World Human Rights Day.
The distraught father was honoured with People’s Friendly Personality Award for his philanthropic gestures.
Abdul-Mutallab, who was represented by Chief Executive Officer of Jaiz Charity and Development Foundation, Imam Abdullahi Shuaib, said he felt fulfilled that his decision to call the attention of the U.S and Nigerian authorities to the strange behaviours of his son saved the lives of over 270 people.
But he admitted that as a father, his son’s incarceration caused a pain he would bear till eternity.
Shuaib said: “He (Abdul Mutallab) is a man that has zero-tolerance for religious extremism. He was the one who alerted the Nigerian and American security agencies, when he observed strange behaviours in his son, urging them to profile him and monitor his activities. At that time, he saw some behaviours that were completely contrary from what he knew about his son.
“The 2009 event vindicated him that the boy was treading a dangerous path. Each time I discussed with him (Abdul Mutallab), he says: ‘Imam, I have done my own as a Nigerian; I have been able to save the lives of over 270 people because if that bomb had exploded, we are talking about 279 lives that would have been lost.’ He said he was fulfilled that he was able to save those lives.
“At the same time, it is also a pain for one’s son to be incarcerated, given three life sentences concurrently. He said he wouldn’t know if it would be possible in his life time to see his son. But if it is the wish of God that the son is not released and he leaves this world, so be it.
“But deep down in him, he wants to see a situation where perhaps the powers that be can revisit the issue, especially now that the son is very remorseful.”