The Chief Judge of Oyo State, Justice Munta Abimbola, on Tuesday, released 45 inmates from the Agodi Correctional Centre in Ibadan and Abolongo Custodial Centres of the Nigerian Correctional Service in the state.
The inmates were granted mercy and were released after the Monitoring Committee on Administration of Criminal Justice Law in the state carefully considered some factors that included the need to decongest the correctional centres, the security challenges in the state, rights of the inmates and prevention of spread of COVID-19.
The released inmates comprised those who were on awaiting trial list, inmates that had spent six years and above, sick convicted inmates, sick but awaiting trial inmates and awaiting trial inmates with minor and bailable offences, as well as those whose cases had been suspended for a long time because prosecution witnesses refused to show up to testify.
Justice Abimbola, in his address, noted that the committee went through the list of 157 inmates recommended for clemency and 145 among them, after careful consideration qualified for the pardon.
He, however, urged the released inmates not to go back to crime, but turn a new leaf and become responsible members of the society.
The Monitoring Committee on Administration of Criminal Justice Law, however, supported the released inmates with money to start a new life, especially during this period of COVID-19 pandemic.