FG to spend N3.5bn on 320 prison vehicles

FG to spend N3.5bn on 320 prison vehicles
October 05 22:27 2016

The Federal Government has approved N3.5 billion for the purchase of 320 operational vehicles to ease the movement of  inmates to courts.

The Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Dambazau, told State House correspondents after Wednesday’s Federal Executive Council meeting that government will be patronise local manufacturers and assemblers in sourcing the vehicles.

“For a very long time, the prison system has suffered due to lack of operational vehicles. And as

such, quite a number of prisoners remain in prisons longer than necessary because they do not have the opportunity to be conveyed to the courts,” he said.

Danbazau noted further that the essence of procuring the vehicles was to ensure that the prison authorities were well equipped to transport the inmates to 5,022 courts across the country.

“We are trying to see how we can reduce the number of inmates awaiting trial. But the criminal Justice Act of 2015 has also made provision for alternative sentencing, otherwise known as non-custodian sentencing.

“The courts can now use that to rather than sending the individual to prison, depending on the crime committed, apply other means of dealing with his case.

“There is also an inter-ministerial committee looking at that issue of decongestion,” the minister said.