As part of its efforts to decongest the centres, the Federal Government has compensated N52 million in penalties and compensation for 399 detainees at various correctional facilities throughout Kaduna State.
At the initiative’s launch on Monday in Zaria, Dr. Ado Saleh, the Comptroller of Correctional Service for Kaduna State, revealed this.
Saleh said, “We are here to release 68 inmates from Zaria, Makarfi, Soba and Ikara Correctional Centres.”
He stated that the event in Zaria was an extension of the Federal Government’s policy, which had earlier resulted in the release of 110 prisoners at Kaduna.
“In total, 399 inmates in Kaduna State were marked to be released at the cost of N52million.
“The commencement of the programme is simultaneously taking place at Kaduna, Kafanchan and Zaria to see the release of 281 across the state.
“Of the 281 to be released across Kaduna State during the ceremony 68 inmates were from Zaria Zone,” he said.
Of the 68 prisoners, the comptroller revealed that 43 came from Zaria, 19 from Soba, 5 from Makarfi, and 19 from Ikara Correctional Centres.
He continued by saying that N10,000 would be handed to each beneficiary to cover their transportation costs.
Prior to this, Olubunmi Ojo, the Minister of Interior, stated that the effort aimed to clear the correctional centres of excess prisoners by compensating them for fines ranging from one million to one thousand Naira.
According to Ojo, who was accompanied by John Otsuka, Assistant Legal Adviser, Federal Ministry of Interior, institutions and centres nationwide were overworked.
He clarified that the gesture aimed to lower the prison population at the centres and defer action to the courts for the remaining detainees.
According to Ojo, the programme will help no fewer than 4068 prisoners nationwide.
Solomon Atambe, a resident of Railway Quarters, Sabon-Gari-Zaria, praised the Federal Government for the priceless gesture while speaking on behalf of the beneficiaries.
In return, Jesus asked the beneficiaries to “sin no more,” encouraging them to make use of the abilities they had learned while residing in the facility.