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FG Flags Off Release of 4,068 Inmates on Fine Nationwide, Gets N585 million from Philanthropists, Corporate World to Pay Fines

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FG Flags Off Release of 4,068 Inmates on Fine Nationwide, Gets N585 million from Philanthropists, Corporate World to Pay Fines

By: Michael Mike

The federal government has flagged off the release of 4,068 inmates sentenced to various terms of imprisonment with option of fine and compensation in Custodial Centres nationwide.

Speaking at the flag off ceremony on Saturday where 37 inmates with option of fine were released at Kuje Medium Security Custodial Centre, the Minister of Interior, Hon. Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo said the innovation was “in our bid to decongest Custodial Centres and make them humane for proper reformation and rehabilitation of offenders to take place.”

He said: “As at yesterday, the 17th day of November, 2023, there were about 80,804 inmates in 253 custodial facilities nationwide, which total installed capacity for the 253 Custodial Centres adds up to less than 50,000. This shows that our Custodial facilities are over-crowded; necessitating this initiative we are flagging off today, which is targeted towards addressing the overcrowding conundrum bedevilling our Custodial Centres and their reformatory function.”

He added that: “Today, we flag off the release of a total of 4,068 inmates who are serving different terms of imprisonment in lieu of fines and/or compensation. Most of the benefitting inmates at the verge of their freedom are indigents who cannot afford to pay their fines, and are languishing in custody.”

On the project which was the minister’s initiative, supported by his friends and corporate organisations spread across the country, Tunji-Ojo said N585 million was raised by philanthropic individuals, groups and corporate bodies, as part of their corporate social responsibility, for this purpose.

He disclosed that all inmates in Custodial Centres who have fines and/or compensation not exceeding N1 million are qualified, and would benefit from the gesture.

He said in addition, we are also providing each of them a stipend to enable them return to their communities.

The Minister said: “Suffice it to mention at this point that we are not just releasing them to their fates; we have given them requisite training aimed at impacting their lives functionally and equipping them with the knowledge for their self-reliance upon discharge. The training also covers their civic duties and responsibilities as citizens, and strategies of refraining from reoffending.”

He noted that: “In line with the President Bola Ahmed Tinubu mantra of Renewed Hope, the benefitting inmates have been given a second opportunity to get back to track and contribute to the ongoing development of our dear nation. It is said that no one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its custodial facilities. It is based on this premise that this administration is poised to transform custodial and non-custodial facilities to ensure compliance with international human rights standards and good correctional practices.”

He pleaded with Nigerians to receive the returning citizens with open arms, warning that: “They should refrain from stigmatizing against them as it can drive them back to offending the law, which will further endanger the society.”

He said. “To the benefitting inmates, I implore you to see this as a second chance to make things right again. You are therefore advised to stay off crime and criminality, and all join hands with our father, President Bola Ahmed Tinubu GCFR, to make Nigeria a great nation. Abide by the instructions and training you have received while in custody, and be a good ambassador in your communities.”

Speaking earlier, the Controller General of Corrections, Haliru Nababa said: “Today’s event is significant and quite admirable, as it emphasizes the Minister’s zeal and commitment to sustain the ongoing reforms in the Service, in line with the present administration’s renewed hope agenda.”

He noted that this sole initiative of the Ministry of Interior has set a very laudable pace for individuals, corporate entities and other stakeholders to take after.

He said: “Overcrowding in most of our Custodial Centres, especially those in metropolitan areas has been a perennial challenge to the Service. The payment of fine/compensation for indigent inmates with such options, is not only philanthropic but strategic in reducing the number of persons in custody.”

Nababa added that: “The emergence of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) Act, 2019 brought a very huge sigh of relief to the Service as it encapsulates a good number of provisions geared towards decongesting our custodial facilities, so as to create ample opportunity for humane containment of inmates in line with global best practice.
Sections 37 (1) and 12(4-12) of the NCoS Act, 2019 which authorizes non-custodial measures and rejection of inmates where a facility has exceeded its capacity respectively, are key among the available windows for ameliorating congestion.”

FG Flags Off Release of 4,068 Inmates on Fine Nationwide, Gets N585 million from Philanthropists, Corporate World to Pay Fines

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ECOWAS Lightens Gambia Community with Solar Power

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ECOWAS Lightens Gambia Community with Solar Power

By: Michael Mike

A wave of excitement filled the air in Mamud Fana South, Gambia, as residents celebrated a new era of clean and reliable electricity with the commissioning of 77 Solar Home Systems (SHSs).

This life-changing project, implemented by UNIQUE ENERGY, was made possible with the financial support of the ECOWAS Commission through the ECOWAS Special Intervention Fund (ESIF), implemented by ECREEE.

For years, residents of Mamud Fana have struggled with limited access to electricity. This often meant evenings spent in darkness, limited opportunities for education and a struggle to power basic appliances. 

Now, the project lights up Mamud Fana South, bringing solar energy to over 1,000 residents. Each household has been equipped with a solar panel, battery storage, inverter, sockets, and lighting bulbs. This new energy source will allow them to power their homes, use appliances, and potentially develop small businesses.

The installations were commissioned on Saturday, June 15th, 2024, in the presence of Mr. Francis Sempore, ECREEE’s Executive Director, Mr. Emmanuel Correa, Representative of The Gambia’s Ministry of Petroleum and Energy and Mr. Njaga Ceesay, Business Development Manager at UNIQUE ENERGY.

The project demonstrates the positive impact that renewable energy solutions can have on rural communities across West Africa.

ECOWAS Lightens Gambia Community with Solar Power

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Chairman Nangere calls for prayers for leaders in the Tikau emirate

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Chairman Nangere calls for prayers for leaders in the Tikau emirate

By:Yahaya Wakili

The Executive Chairman of Nangere local government area in Yobe state, Hon. Samaila Musa FCNA, has called on the people of the local government to use the Eid-el-kabir occasion to pray for His Excellency, the Executive Governor of Yobe state, Hon. Mai Mala Buni CON (Chiroman Gujba), Nangere local government, and Tikau emirate council.

Hon. Samaila Musa FCNA, who is also the Walin Tikau Emirate Council, disclosed this in his Sallah message to the people of Nangere local government area at Eid-el-kabir praying ground in Nangere.

The chairman charged the people of the local government to embrace the spirit of love and tolerance and live in peace with one another.

“Nangere local government is known as number one in the state in farming and hard work and has urged the people to pay more attention to farming and rearing as the rainy season commences.

Hon. Samaila Musa also called on the people to abide by the law and order, with a view to building peace and unity among the citizens of the local government, the Tikau emirate council, and Yobe state in general.

“Nangere local government is the most peaceful local government in the state; therefore, he urges the people to intensify prayers to our leaders to be guided aright for increased peace, security, and prosperity of our local government, our emirate, and our state in general.” Wali said.

He warned the people of the local government to avoid encroaching on the cattle roads in order to avoid a clash between the farmers and headers in the area.

Chairman Nangere calls for prayers for leaders in the Tikau emirate

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Senator Lawan consoles the families of Karege, his former COS

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Senator Lawan consoles the families of Karege, his former COS

By: Yahaya Wakili

President of the Ninth Senate, Senator Ahmed Ibrahim Lawan, Ph.D., GCON, Sardaunan Bade, Yobe North Senatorial District, was today in Damaturu, the capital of Yobe State, to condole with the family of his former Deputy Chief of Staff, Alhaji Mohammed Mamman Karage, whose demise occurred on Friday night.

Alhaji Mohammed Mamman Karage died after undergoing heart surgery at the Ahmadu Bello Teaching Hospital in Zaria, Kaduna State. Alhaji Karage, aged 65, was survived by two wives and children.

The President of the 9th Senate was joined on the condolence visit by the Deputy Speaker of the Yobe State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Yau Usman Dachia, the Chairman of the National Assembly Service Commission, Engr. Ahmed Kadi Amshi, and his former Chief of Staff, Dr. Babagana Aji.

Others include: Member representing Karasuwa constituency, Hon. Adamu Dala Dogo; Yobe State Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Hon. Mohammed Gagiyo; his former Special Adviser on Budget, Alhaji Suleiman Jamo; and Chairman, Bade local government administration council, Hon. Ibrahim Babagana, amongst others.

During the visit to his family, Senator Ahmed Lawan offered his deepest sympathies and urged them to find solace in the deceased’s memory and legacies, which he left behind through the countless lives he touched. He prayed for Allah’s (SWT) guidance and support to enable them to bear this immeasurable loss.

“May Allah (SWT) grant Alhaji Mohammed Karage’s soul eternal rest in Aljannatul Firdaus.

Senator Lawan consoles the families of Karege, his former COS

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