Paul Orude, Bauchi
Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State has urged the Federal Government to consider extending its COVID-19 palliative to Correctional Services across the country to cater to the healthcare needs of inmates.
Mohammed made the request when the House of Representatives’ Committee on Reformatory Institutions paid him a courtesy visited him at the Council Chamber, Government House, Bauchi.
The Governor said at this period of when the coronavirus pandemic affected the socio-economic progress of the country, there is need for the National Assembly to come up with a budgetary allocation that will provide isolation centres in correctional centres to enable inmates to access the required health services.
He stressed the need for all hands to be on deck to tackle congestion in correctional centres across the country through a robust administrative framework on the speedy dispensation of justice.
‘I cherish this visit and I seize the opportunity to observe that, members of the correctional services are facing some challenges on how to admit those on waiting trial because of this COVID-19 pandemic.
‘Most of us at the state levels lack the capacity to isolate those on trial or to provide them with required medical care. But we must support our correctional centres to tackle the spread of diseases for the betterment of our inmates,’ he said.
‘I happy with this committee for embarking on inspection of facilities in correctional services and for the welfare of those in the centres and therefore my administration is ready to support you.’
Governor Mohammed emphasised the need for the upgrade of healthcare centres in correctional services with the provision of necessary medical facilities for the wellbeing of inmates.
The Governor, therefore, described their visit as timely and assured of his administration’s support for smooth discharge of their assigned responsibilities.
On his part, the Deputy Chairman of the Committee, Hon Tijjani Zanna Zakariyya said the committee was in Bauchi for an oversight function to custodial centres in the state.
He said the committee was mandated to inspect facilities at the correctional centres in the North-East with a view to assist in tackling the problem of overstretched facilities bedevilling the Nation’s correctional centres for the effective reformation of inmates