By Polycarp Auta
Jos – Justice Yakubu Dakwak, the Acting Chief Judge in Plateau, has granted amnesty to 22 inmates and bail to 20 others across prisons formations in the state.
The prisoners were freed during a visit by the state Criminal Justice Administration Committee led by the chief judge to prisons formations in the state.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the eight-day visit, which started on Jan. 2 to end on Jan. 9, is for the committee to go round the various prisons in the state.
Dakwak, who spoke at the end of the jail delivery, said it was aimed at ascertaining jail conditions and to look into cases of awaiting trials with a view to decongesting the prisons.
“This visit is firstly aimed at ascertaining the condition of prison formations across the state and how far the inmates are being catered for.
“We also embarked on this visit to know the number of inmates who are unfairly incarcerated.
“All these are geared towards decongesting our prisons by ensuring that the yards are made habitable and comfortable for those who really deserve to be there.
“I have studied their files and based on recommendations, I decided as part of this visit to free 22 inmates and also grant bail to 20 others,” he said.
The acting chief judge thanked Gov. Simon Lalong, for providing an enabling environment for the judiciary to thrive and carry out its function of justice adjudication with fairness.
Earlier, Mr Neol Ailewon, the Controller of Prisons in the state, commended the committee for maintaining its position as one of the best criminal justice administration system in the country.
He said the committee’s action could be seen through speedy dispensation of justice as evident in the disposition of inmates across prisons facilities in the state.
“It is because of the quick dispensation of justice occasioned by the synergy between the police, judiciary and the prison service that over 70 per cent of inmates are those already convicted and are serving their jail terms,” he said.
NAN reports that the committee was impressed with the improvement in jail conditions in the state with specifics to inmates feeding, medical services, reformatory activities, improved state of the facilities and the prison reward system.
The committee further urged the prison service not to relent in its effort until global standards was attained in the discharge of its statutory duty.