A Committee on Correctional Service Decongestion and Reforms, working on behalf of President Buhari has released 19 inmates including a 75-year-old man and his son.
The septuagenarian was released from the Kuje Medium Security Correctional Centre, FCT Abuja. The man and his son had spent 13 years in custody awaiting trial. All the freed inmates were not identified.
Chairman of the Presidential Committee and Chief Judge, Federal Capital Territory (FCT) High Court, Justice Ishaq Bello on a visit to Kuje Correctional Centre, on December 19th, explained the conditions for the release of the inmates. The release, he said was based on age, inability to pay fine, ill-health and overstay of the statutory detention period.
Justice Bello said the exercise was in line with President Buhari’s foresight to decongest the custodial centres to meet with the international standard of criminal justice and human rights standard. He said the Committee is working hard to increase Skill Acquisition Centres as part of efforts to make inmates acquire skills on any job of interest to enable them start a new life after the completion of their jail terms.
The inmates will be entitled to 25 per cent of the proceeds of products from the centres. Bello cautioned the Chief Magistrates against indefinite detention of inmates in prison while advising them to spell out the sentence if there is compensation, payment of fine, time or year.
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