Chief Judge releases 153 awaiting trial inmates
Reprieve came the way of 153 awaiting inmates of the Kirikiri Maximum and Medium prison as the Chief Judge of Lagos State, Justice Olufunmilayo Atilade, yesterday freed them.
Three of the released inmates have been in prison custody for over 15 years. While 24 of the inmates were released from the maximum prison, 129 were released from the medium prison. Among the 129 inmates released from the medium prison, 79 were standing trial for capital offences, while 50 were standing trial for minor offences.
The chief judge in her remark said the amnesty extended to the released inmates was part of her statutory duty to continuously ensure that the prisons are decongested. She admonished the freed inmates to reciprocate the gesture by ensuring that they do not return to crime.
The CJ was accompanied on the visit by senior judges from the state judiciary, officials of the Lagos Ministry of Justice, members of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), various non-governmental organisations and representatives of the Nigerian Police.
The Deputy Comptroller in charge of Kirikiri Maximum Prison, Seye Oduntan, appreciated the CJ for the gesture and pleaded with her to ensure the programme is a continuous one, as more inmates who qualify for the exercise still abound in the prison.
According to the statistic posted on the notice board of the maximum cell, the prison with a 1,053 capacity currently has 1,235 inmates. While 772 of the inmates are awaiting trial, 83 are serving life sentence, 209 have been convicted and 171 are condemned prisoners.
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