How 15 jailbreaks occurred in 8 years, 3,646 inmates still on the run – Investigation

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Close to 4,000 inmates that escaped from Nigerian correctional centres between 2013 and this year are yet to be rearrested, our investigations have revealed.

Of the 3,646 inmates yet to be recaptured in the last three years, about half of the fleeing criminals  were illegally set free in three major jailbreaks this year(2021) alone.

According to Blueprint, a total of 6,407 inmates in 15 correctional centres across the country regained unauthorised freedom following breach of security by unknown gunmen, including some suspected members of Boko Haram and armed robbers.

 However, the minister put the figure of those inmates still on the run at 3,412.

The miscreants usually attack the centres with sophisticated weapons, including machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and improvised explosive devices as evident in the Owerri and Benin City attacks where they assaulted poorly armed security personnel and freed large numbers of inmates serving various terms at the custodial centres.

It wasalso observed that hoodlums had taken advantage of the #ENDSARS protest to launch severe attacks on some dismally manned correctional centres such as the Benin City and Owerri facilities where sundry mass assault weapons were freely deployed to set free inmates and subsequently looted stores of provisions and few weapons available.

These breakages also culminated in the death of 30 persons including inmates and correctional officials while no fewer than 200 others were either severely injured or sustained minor injuries which nonetheless were serious enough to require weeks of medical attention.

Available records revealed the jailbreaks at different times across the country.

For instance, at the Shagamu minimum correctional centre, Ogun state, attacked January 4, 2013 by hoodlums, resulted in the escape of 20 inmates and left several officials and others injured.

Only about four escapees were said to have been rearrested by the armed squad of the Service.

Security at the Olokuta Medium Security Centre in Akure, Ondo state was severely breached on the 30th of June 2013.

No fewer than 175 inmates escaped while two persons died and one warder was severely injured. A paltry 54 escapees were rearrested.