It appears the dream of some inmates remanded in Lagos prisons is about to become a reality, as Lagos State Prison Watch recently offered free legal services to awaiting-trial inmates of the Badagry prisons to facilitate their release and most importantly to aid the decongestion of the facility presently overcrowded.
The Prison Watch team, comprising of State counsels from Lagos State Citizens’ Right, Office of The Public Defender (OPD), and Community Service, also advocated for minor and first offenders to be given community service option instead of being jailed for trivial offences.
Mrs Clara Ibirogba, Director of Citizens Rights, Ministry of Justice and Head of the Lagos State Prison Watch team said the advocacy for community service for inmates will effectively help in decongesting the prisons.
Ibirogba expressed her displeasure over the situation of some prisons in State; adding that facilities for the prisoners in Badagry are inadequate due to overpopulation.
She said: “State counsels from the OPD shall be offering free legal services to indigent inmates who cannot afford the services of a lawyer, to facilitate their release through the courts, as this will aid in decongesting the prisons”.
A representative of the Deputy Controller of Prison Mr. Emmanuel Olaitan commended the State government for its constant support to the welfare of Prisoners and appealed for the continued support to the facility.