The minister of interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has begged the governor and Federal government to release over 30% of inmates across the country, the purpose of this to have decongestion of the prison.
He said that the interface was necessary as more than 90 per cent of the inmates were being held for contravening state laws.
Aregbesola also said that over 70 per cent of the 75,635 inmates at present were awaiting trial.
The minister said that the federal offenders in the system were far less than 10 per cent, adding that the bulk of people in custody were those who have run foul of state laws.
He said that they were therefore being kept under the legal jurisdiction of their respective states.
The minister added that the decongestion of the 253 custodial centres nationwide was necessary as some of the inmates have no reason to remain in custody.
Aregbesola, therefore, said all stakeholders must work towards a “better-structured criminal justice administration, otherwise, we will just be left with congested and overcrowded facilities”.
He said, “I have written to the Nigerian Governors Forum to allow me to come and address them on how they can support the process of decongestion.
“Because the governors must buy into this system for us to do a massive decongestion, especially of Awaiting Trial Inmates.
“If we get the buy-in of state judicial authorities and the government of the states, we can pull out 30 per cent of those who are there.”