Obinna Odogwu, Abakaliki
Ebonyi State Chief Judge, Justice Anselm Nwaigwe, has freed 11 inmates who were serving various jail terms at the Abakaliki Correctional Centre. The freed inmates include one person who was remanded in a Remand Home.
This is even as 13 inmates were further remanded in the correctional centre to be reformed.
Speaking shortly after the exercise, Justice Nwaigwe said that the exercise was targeted at decongesting the prisons, saying, however, that the exercise which is ongoing would also be carried out at the Correctional Service Centre in Afikpo on Tuesday.
“The chief judge visits prisons from time to time to discharge or grant bail to those who are not supposed to be there.”
The chief judge said that state judiciary under his watch enjoys a good working relationship with the Department of Public Prosecution (DPP) and therefore would not accept any delay on cases whatsoever.
In her speech, the State Controller of the Nigerian Correctional Service, Mrs Adaobi Oputa, praised the chief judge and the state judiciary in general for the good works particularly for the exercise.
She said that it would help to decongest the correctional centre and indeed, grant relief to those who deserve it. She said that she would welcome such exercise as often as they occur.
“This is one of the steps taken to decongest the prisons and we will subsequently meet the DPP, security agencies, and human rights organisations among others on such efforts,” she said.
Meanwhile, the inmates who were granted freedom, while expressing their happiness, thanked the chief judge for his magnanimity and pledged that they would maintain positive attitude henceforth.