19th December, 2016
The Imo State Command of the Nigerian Prison Service (NPS) on Monday said it still enjoy peace and stability in its operations despite the state of infrastructure in the facility.
Spokesman of the command, Mr James Madugba, who disclosed this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), said that proper discipline was the key to the success attained in the facility built since 1905.
He said that the capacity of the prison 548 when it was built in 1905, adding that it now housed over 2,300 inmates.
“The capacity of the prison when it was built in 1905 was 548, but as I speak with you now we have over 2,300.
“God has been so faithful to us because considering the number you can’t believe that we have been on top of the situation, we have been managing them.
“You know that some of these infrastructures built then are so much dilapidated now, and you can imagine the rate of congestion.
“I believe that our staff, our officers and men are doing their best to cope with the situation.
“We have not recorded any problem, and considering the number, I think Owerri Prison has been one of the most peaceful prison formations in the country.”
Madugba, however, added that measures have been taken by stakeholders to decongest the prisons and improve on it infrastructure.
On the issue of prisoners escaping from the facility, the spokesman said it was not true, adding that it was a complete disinformation of the public.
“There is nothing like that. I want to tell you this that no such thing took place in Owerri Prisons.
“What I had expected from the journalist that wrote that thing would have been to get in touch with the office or to me or to the controller to find out the truth of the matter.
“Maybe the person must have called me or I was somewhere else or whatever. However, I know that I have always been handy and very free with journalists.
“Even if you try once or twice and you did not get somebody, it is left for you to continue until you get that person.
“But this issue of being hasty in some publications where you want to reach somebody, you do not get the person you ahead to publish something. It is unfortunate my brother.”