The Nigerian Governors Forum has received a letter from Interior Minister Rauf Aregbesola requesting a meeting to discuss decongesting the nation’s jails.
The Minister’s Media Adviser, Sola Fasure, informed our correspondent of this on Tuesday.
Aregbesola announced he will meet with state governors in exactly one month to get an agreement on the nationwide release of at least 30% of prisoners.
The minister noted that more than 70% of the 75,635 prisoners currently incarcerated were doing so while awaiting trial and claimed that the interface was required because more than 90% of the detainees were being imprisoned for violating various state laws.
He said that the percentage of federal offenders in the system was much lower than 10% and that most of the people in detention had broken state laws.
Aregbesola claimed that as a result, they were still subject to the legal authority of their respective states.
The minister continued by saying that some of the prisoners had no need to remain in jail, making it imperative to decongest the nation’s 253 detention facilities.
Fasure, in response to the minister’s move, stated that although the minister had written to the Governors Forum, he had not yet met with them since they would need to get in touch with him and schedule a meeting.
“He sent a letter to them asking to meet with them, but he hasn’t heard back yet. Therefore, the meeting has not taken place.