Buhari: Prison con­ges­tion a na­tional scandal

Weekly Trust - - News -

President Muham­madu Buhari yes­ter­day de­scribed con­ges­tion in Nige­ria’s prisons as a na­tional scandal, not­ing that many of the prisons were over­crowded by up to 90 per­cent.

Speak­ing while re­ceiv­ing a del­e­ga­tion of jus­tices of the Supreme Court and Ap­peal Court as well as heads of other ju­di­cial or­gans at the Aso Rock Pres­i­den­tial Villa in Abuja, Buhari stressed the need for a new ap­proach to prison de­con­ges­tion.

The del­e­ga­tion led by the Chief Jus­tice of Nige­ria, Jus­tice Wal­ter Onnoghen, vis­ited the president to wel­come him from his re­cent med­i­cal va­ca­tion to the United King­dom.

The president said ur­gent mea­sures should be taken to speed­ily de­con­gest the prisons in or­der to en­sure jus­tice and save cost of main­te­nance and wel­fare of in­mates.

Buhari, who noted the prob­lem of trans­port­ing in­mates from prisons to courts, said the At­tor­ney-Gen­eral of the Fed­er­a­tion, Abubakar Malami, was ad­vo­cat­ing that courts be set up in­side prisons to fast-track de­con­ges­tion.

The president said if he dis­closed the amount of money spent on north­east se­cu­rity and the rel­a­tive sta­bil­ity in the Niger Delta, the nation’s elite would hide their faces in shame.

He said he was mind­ful of the daunt­ing chal­lenges faced by the ju­di­ciary in the ar­eas of in­fra­struc­ture and fund­ing, hence the de­ci­sion to in­crease the ju­di­ciary bud­get in the 2017 fis­cal year.

President Muham­madu Buhari (left) with jus­tices of the Supreme Court led by Chief Jus­tice of Nige­ria, Jus­tice Wal­ter Onnoghen (2nd left) at the State House in Abuja yes­ter­day PHOTO: State House

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