By Mary BASSEY, Senior Investigator Reporter, Lagos.
THE Federal Government revealed Monday in Lagos that plans were on the way to replacing the present double bunk iron bed with wooden ones in all the cells in the Nigerian correctional Centers nationwide. The move source said, followed the early morning electrocution Monday, of five inmates of the Awaiting Trail Men ATM at the Ikoyi Medium Security Custodial Centers, formerly known as the Ikoyi Prison. The sad incident which had since sent shock waves down the spines of both inmates and warders alike it was gathered, resulted from power surge while some of the inmates were being taken to court; which ultimately cut one of the electric cables in one of the cells, causing it to fall on a double bunk iron bed. Five inmates who were leaning on the bed as of the time of the incident were electrocuted instantly while others who innocently rushed to save the deceased persons were also affected. About 10 of them received minor shock and were rushed to the medical center within the premises and revived. CrimeWorld scooped that over 100 inmates were sandwiched in the affected cell originally meant for 30 persons adding that for the prompt intervention of health workers, more deaths would have been recorded.
But describing the incident as “tragic”, the Interior Minister, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola who was conducted round the facilities shortly after it occurred by the Controller-General of the Nigerian Correctional Service, Comptroller-General Ja’afaru Ahmed, was quoted as saying, “Since the cause of this rather tragic incident is as a result of a naked wire that was forced to cut and fell on an iron bed due to power surge, there is need to replace these iron beds with wooden ones in all our facilities across the nation to avoid a recurrence.”
In his reaction, the spokesperson for the Nigerian Correctional Service, Francis Enobore, who confirmed the incident in a statement on behalf of his boss said, “Early this morning, the Controller General of Corrections, Ja’afaru Ahmed, received with the deepest grief the unfortunate death of five inmates of the Ikoyi Medium Security Custodial Centre, Lagos, as a result of electrical fault in one of the cells. The CG, who visited the scene of the incident with the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, noted that it was the first time in the history of the NCS to experience such a disaster and assured that adequate preventive measures would be put in place to forestall future occurrence.”
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