The Nigerian President Muhammad Buhari has granted presidential pardon to 2,600 inmates of Correctional Centres nationwide, gesture said to be the first phase and will be a continuous exercise for those who deserve the pardon.
Penpushing reports that the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbeshola, made this known on Thursday at a press conference held in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) explaining that 70 of the inmates would be released from Kuje maximum custodial centre
The Minister emphasisied, “after the release of the first phase, the committee will continue to meet regularly to consider those who deserve the benefit,”
Penpushing further reports that, in his own remarks, the Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, noted that the United Nations (UN) had advised member states to reduce the number of inmates in custodial centres, in view of the social distancing policy aimed at containing the spread of Coronavirus.
The Minister described the launch of the 2020 presidential pardon as historic, stressing that the process of selecting beneficiaries started in 2018, and also warned the beneficiaries to desist from crimes, urging the community to receive them without stigmatisation.
Penpushing also reports that, Malami lamented that 70 per cent of inmates in Nigeria’s Correctional Centres were awaiting trial, while in his remarks the Controller-General of Nigerian Correctional Centres (NCoS), Ja’afaru Ahmed, said that so far the service had not recorded any case of coronavirus, adding that the pardon gestures would go a long way in reducing the number of inmates in the service nationwide.