Accord party’s presidential candidate, Professor Christopher Imumolen says extensive prison reforms will form a major part of his 25 executive orders if he becomes Nigeria’s president come 2023.
The country’s youngest presidential candidate says wholesale reforms had become necessary in the prison sector because it no longer essentially serves the purpose of reforming characters and building responsible citizens
Professor Imumolen who was a guest on Human Rights Radio and TV’s popular breakfast show, ‘Brekete Family Program’, broadcast live in Abuja on Boxing Day said prison reforms had become necessary in the light of the dehumanising conditions prisoners, both convicted and unconvicted, are subjected to in the country’s correctional centres.
“I have had opportunities to see how our prisoners, both convicted and unconvicted, live in these correctional facilities. And to say the truth, they are inhuman conditions,” Professor Imumolen said
“In my work as a social entrepreneur, I have had cause to facilitate the release of over 200 prisoners. I can tell you that the conditions under which our prisoners live is not fit for human beings whether they have committed crimes for which they are serving sentences or not.
“Prisons are supposed to be places where the characters of deviants or criminals are remoulded and reintegrated back into society after they must have paid for their crimes, living in confinement, for a limited time.
“But the way our prisons are structured, they neither reform nor remould. Rather, they make prisoners worse than they were before entering the prisons.
“The country’s case is so bad that when somebody who is not a criminal enters into prison either by default or otherwise, he comes out a full-blown criminal after a short period.
“The prison is supposed to be a place that will take a person’s comfort, and restrict his freedom to do certain things in the time he does time, but it should absolutely not be a place where a person’s life is taken.
“People’s lives are being literally taken these days the way our prisons run presently.
“And that is why my government will be declaring an emergency in that sector should I get the people’s mandate to become Nigeria’s president next year.
“Prisons are not meant to be too comfortable or else the rate of crime and criminal activities will rise exponentially. However, I am saying that prisons must be made to serve the purpose of changing the characters of criminals and making them better citizens by the time they complete their jail terms,” he said.
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