Federal Government Set To Releases 3955 Prisoners. The Federal Government has said it will release more inmates just as the number of those discharged has increased to 3,955. This is part of measures to de-congest the custodial facilities and curb COVID-19 spread.
Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, said that the challenge of inmates’ accommodation was being addressed. There is the construction of 3,000-capacity custodial centers in Kano, Karshi, Abuja and Bori in Rivers State.
He made this known while inaugurating 59 vehicles at the Nigerian Correctional Service headquarters, Abuja, yesterday. The minister also said the 32 satellite custodial centers previously shut down due to insurgency had been re-opened and rehabilitated. 14 new facilities and barracks is been constructed.
More so, he said to ensure the well-being of the inmates, the NCoS had recruited more medical and paramedical personnel into the service. NCoS has also procured adequate quantities of drugs and medications.
He pointed out that the service has contributed to agriculture and food production in the country through the reactivation of custodial farm centers for large scale agricultural production in piggery, fishing, cattle rearing and poultry in different parts of the country.
According to the minister, the three custodial farm centers include Kujama Farm in Kaduna State for maize; Lakushi Farm in Plateau State for rice and Ozalla Farm in Edo State for palm oil.
“We have also procured 25 new tractors, combined harvesters and relevant implements to enhance agricultural productivity in custodial farm centers. We have also begun the implementation of the correctional service rehabilitation plan and collaboration with relevant agencies to de-congest the custodial centers.”
“When we started the programme two months ago, over 2,600 inmates were released from custody. This number has since increased to 3,955 as the process is ongoing and progressively, more inmates will exit our custodial centers,”
The Controller-General, NCoS, Jafa’aru Ahmed, said more vehicles were needed to convey about 5,000 inmates to court every day. Aregbesola said graduate degree programmes have commenced. He also noted that about 649 inmates are running various degree and postgraduate programmes in the facilities.