States Should Start Feeding Inmates Jailed By Them, Not FG – Aregbesola

The Federal Government has asked state governors to establish their own correctional services and also build their custodial centres, saying that the law has empowered them to do so.

Speaking at a two-day conference on Decongestion and Corrections Administration in Abuja on Thursday, the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, lamented that the congestion of custodial centres had taken a toll on the finances of the FG.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, Shuaib Belgore, had disclosed that the FG earmarked N22.44bn to feed inmates in all the custodial centres across the country.

Belgore said 90 per cent of inmates in the custodial facilities were arrested and being prosecuted by state governments.

Speaking on Thursday, Aregbesola maintained that states must see to the accommodation and care of its offenders to save cost.

He said, “With the amendment to the constitution in this regard, states are now empowered to build correctional centres and facilities to house offenders, who are convicted and sentenced for committing state offences. Where states are unable to build custodial centres, it is believed that they can suggest ways to collaborate with the Federal Government in feeding and housing these state offenders.

“Overcrowding in the custodial centres has led to a huge revenue drain for the Federal Government, being the only party shouldering the responsibility of running and maintaining the custodial centres. The Federal Government can’t bear this anymore. I am going to leave strict recomnendations to my successor on that law. We would rather use the money meant for feeding inmates to improve our facilities. “

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