Chief Judge blames Nigerian Police for prison congestion
Justice Simeon Chibuzor-Amadi the chief Judge of Rivers State, has expressed displeasure over a report that Rivers State Correctional Centers have the “highest number of inmates in West Africa.
During a goal-delivery exercise at the Port Harcourt Correctional Center, the CJ blamed men and officers of Nigerian Police for the congestion and accused them of not carrying out “proper investigations” before charging inmates to court.
The chief judge also directed judges and magistrates to ensure they include their names in “warrant orders” and also ensure regular sending of “discharge orders” of discharged inmates to the Nigerian Correctional Center for easy release.
He however warned against the filing of “frivolous charges” against accused persons.
He also maintained that the judiciary, the correctional centre, the Nigerian Police and the Department of Public Prosecution must put in their best to ensure the “decongestion of correctional facilities”.
While advising the released inmates to go back home and become better citizens, he assured that the judiciary will conduct another round of goal-delivery exercises before the Christmas celebration.
In his speech, the State Controller of Port Harcourt Correctional Center, Felix Lawrence commended the judiciary for the step and assured their collaboration in ensuring the decongestion of the facilities across the state.
Twenty-two inmates who have served jail terms of nine years or more without the record of their case files at the DPP or in court were released by the chief judge.
According to Daily Post, about 3, 385 inmates are currently serving various jail terms at the Port Harcourt correctional facility.