39 Abia prison inmates regain freedom

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About 39 inmates who were remanded at the Afaraukwu Federal Prison in Umuahia, the Abia State capital for allegedly committing various offences have regained their freedom.

The inmates including Chukwudi Kalu, Njoku Okoro, Okechukwu Ubani, Ndubuisi Ndukwe, Chimdi Onuobia, Obinna Okechukwu, Ahamefula Okereke, Innocent Ibegbulam, Eze Nwachukwu, Chima Ilochukwu, John Samuel Peter, Chikodi Temple Azuogu, Mfom Bassey Okon and among others were released by the acting Chief Justice of the State Hon. Justice Onuoha A.K Ogwe during his visit at the correctional facility.

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The freed inmates; all males were said to have been brought into the correctional home after being accused of murder, armed robbery, attempted murder between 2006 till date.

The Public Relations Officer of the Abia State Judiciary, Chika Orji-Nwoke said that the action of the acting Abia CJ was in line with the directives of the President, Muhammadu Buhari for State Chief Judges to review cases of awaiting trial inmates with the intention of decongesting prisons which have exceeded its limit.

It was gathered that while some of the freed inmates were unlawfully detained at the correctional home as no case against them has been brought any competent law court, other inmates were said to be culpable of the crimes that they were accused of, but have overstayed their time in the home.

According to Orji-Nwoke, the acting CJ had setup a committee on prisons decongestion which he charged to find out and recommend what could be done to reduce the number of awaiting trial inmates and decongest the prisons in the state.

It was learnt that the visit at the Umuahia prison could not have been unconnected with the recommendations of the decongestion committee who may have called for decongestion of correctional homes in the state whose facilities are already overstretched by the inmates’ population.

Our reporter gathered that Ogwe while admonishing the freed inmates not to waste their useful years in crime, urged them to ensure that they become useful to themselves, families and the society at large by ensuring that they are law abiding citizens of the country.

The acting Abia CJ having pity on some freed inmates whose houses were far from the yard promised to carter for their transportation fares to their respective homes.

Culled from here

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