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A’Ibom Lawmaker Secures Freedom For 67 inmates



The lawmaker representing Onna State Constituency in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Mr. Nse Essien has secured freedom for 67 inmates of Uyo Correctional Centre.

Essien said over the weekend that the gesture was his contribution towards decongesting prisons in the state which according to him are filled up with inmates with minor bailable offenses.

He said the 67 inmates freed by him over a period of five years were people who could not pay the option of fine ordered by the court over minor and civil offenses committed by them.

“I have been paying fines for prison inmates and securing their release from prison since I became a lawmaker about fives ago and intend to continue with the gesture as long as I remain in the House of Assembly.

“I am motivated to do this because of my love for humanity and God. Many of us are fortunate to have freedom but there are those who are not as fortunate may be because of their acts of commission or they find themselves within the confines of the prison yard.

“Some of these people may not have committed the offenses for which they have been imprisoned. Some could have where they shouldn’t have been at the wrong time.

“Again because of poverty, they could not pay the fines. So some of them are in jail for three years due their inability to pay a fine as little as a hundred thousand naira”.

He urged privileged persons, non-governmental organizations, religious organizations and corporate bodies to join in the campaign to decongest correctional centres across the country.

“If we have more people and organizations who join me in paying little fines to free inmates our prisons will not be congested and the facilities in our correctional centre’s will not be overstretched.

He commended President Muhammadu Buhari for changing the name from Nigerian Prisons Service to Nigerian Correctional Centre, adding that prisons should not just be a place of punishment but centre’s for skills and knowledge acquisition.

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