By ONYEKACHUKWU MELUWA, Warri
Nigerian Correctional Service Centre Sapele inmates have protested against ill treatment, lack of food and water in the Sapele Local Government Area of Delta State
There was also lock-down on Monday, as prisoners attempted to escape.
It was gathered that the protest was triggered by prisoners who were alleging that 25 prisoners were granted amnesty by the state government. while the Chief Justice of Delta State, Justice Marshall Umukoro, who visited the Correctional Service Center few days ago, released only three.
AUTHENTIC NEWS DAILY gathered that some security men who attempted to calm situations were injured and a prisoner was said to have been stabbed.
It was also learnt that the Correctional Service Centre was set ablaze, with the Fire Service Vehicle from the Delta State Fire Service, struggling to put out the fire.
A source said that, “the incident started from the Awaiting Trial Convict, section, at about 7:40am when prisoners began singing and then breaking out from their prison cells, while refusing to take their meals.
“Officers on duty tried to pacify them, but the inmates refused to listen and they began to mobilise others. But before they knew it, the protest was beginning to spread to other inmates and they were getting violent.
“The Correctional Service centre officers on duty had no option than to call in other security men, who came in trying to calm them down, but the prisoners went on destroying things”.
A prisoner, who attempted to state their reasons before a violent inmate chased him away said, “other places, inmates were released in huge numbers but here, it is only one, the said three inmates are lies, the other two are people that were bailed, so it’s only one that was granted amnesty here”, he said before he was chased away by the violent prisoner, who was welding a cutlass.
“At about 9:34am, smoke were seen billowing from inside the Nigerian Correctional Service centre, with objects like stones, bottles, food flask, being flung out.
“The State Fire Service van drove in at about 9:50am, trying to put off the fire but unable to carried out their service amidst objects being thrown at them, they retreated with other security men running for cover.”
A Correctional service officer, who do not want the name on print said, “the prisoners attempted to escape through a hole, they dugged, in the wall but were met by armed officers.
“They broke the walls, set their foams ablaze and they burnt other records in the Senior Officer’s office, you can see we are battling them. he said.
“They opened the roof and dug walls trying to escape. But shots were fired by security officers to dissuade them. They retreated and went down into the prison”.
At about 1:36pm, there were also loud shouts of female inmates heard screaming, Security men comprising of the 19th battalion of the Nigerian Army, Koko, the Nigerian Police Command, Sapele, Nigerian Navy, and vigilante men led by the LG chairman, Sapele Divisional Police Officer, CSP Akande Abubakar and the two SSA’s on security to the State governor led a team to rescue the women. The female inmates were later taken away to an unknown destination.
The Controller, Nigerian Correctional Service, Delta State Ovie Friday Ezesobor, who breezed in at about 2:11pm, immediately led the security men back to the centre where he succeeded after 30 minutes to calm the inmates down
He said, “We are trying to calm them, they all can not get amnesty I have told them, we will do all we can to calm them, keep them inside and I must thank all of you who helped in calming the situation, he said”.