The Jigawa State Government has facilitated the release of 74 inmates from various correctional centres in the state.
Gov. Muhammad Badaru disclosed this to newsmen in Dutse, the capital of the state, yesterday.
Badaru said the gesture was to decongest the facilities in order to ensure social distancing among the inmates in view of the current global Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
He, however, explained that the inmates to be released were those with minor offenses and those who were convicted with an option of fine.
“Today, we’re releasing 74 inmates from various correctional centres in the state. And more will be released soon.
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“This is to ensure we decongest the facilities to ensure social distancing among the inmates in view of the current global COVID-19 pandemic.
“It is also part of the preventive measures taken by the government to protect the inmates from contracting the virus due to congestion,” he said.
Earlier, the state Chairman of the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Mr Bashir Hussaini, disclosed that the association had concluded plans to facilitate the release of similar number of inmates in the state.
“We visited some of the correctional centres in the state and assessed their conditions.
“For this, we’ve written a report about Medical Security Correctional Centre and approached the state’s Attorney-General and Chief Judge of the state on how we (NBA) can facilitate the release of inmates with bailable offenses,” Hussaini said.
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He added that the gesture would include those who have been convicted with option of fine.
“NBA will find a way to see how it can pay for those who were convicted with an option of fine but who could not afford to pay.
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“All we want to achieve is assist in decongesting the facilities to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the state,” he said.
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