BY SIMON EBEGBULEM
BENIN—EDO State Police Commissioner, Mr Olayinka Balogun, yesterday, said the Command was still awaiting more details from the Prison authorities as regards the jail break at Oko Medium Prison, Benin City on Sunday.
Balogun, who briefed newsmen in Benin City, said the command had intensified security around the prison, adding that contrary to reports that armed men blew up the prison with a dynamite leading to the escape of no fewer than 10 inmates, “there was no invasion of any kind. The escape bid was purely the handiwork of the prison inmates.”
However, a resident in the area had informed Vanguard that the prison was turned into a war zone after the invaders stormed the place with sophisticated weapons, blew up part of the prison gate which led to escape of no fewer than 10 inmates while 12 were rearrested.
The eye witness also informed Vanguard that there was a shoot out between the invaders and the police and warders.
When contacted, Edo State Controller of Prisons, Mr F. Ewulo, said: “Early in the morning (Sunday), there was an attempt jail break at Oko Prison. Investigation is on and an official statement will be issued in due course.”
Balogun noted that after a distress call from the prison at 1.05a.m. was received, “Police patrol teams from Airport Division and operatives from ‘B’ Operations were immediately dispatched to the scene by the Commissioner of Police.”
He added that he was physically present at the scene to ensure that the situation was immediately brought under control as the two prison inmates who had earlier escaped through the holes bored from within were rearrested.
It was gathered that security had been intensified in and around the prison environment.