By Onozure Dania
Lagos—THE Chief Judge, CJ, of Lagos State, Justice Opeyemi Oke, yesterday assured Lagos State Prison authorities of plans by the state judiciary to review the remand guidelines of suspects in minor offences.
Justice Oke who disclosed this yesterday during her visit to the Ikoyi Prisons, said the state Judiciary and legal stakeholders would meet to discuss on reviewing of bail terms and fines, to make the release of suspects achievable.
Justice Oke, while reacting to complaints by some inmates of the prison who have been unable to pay option of fines imposed on them, noted that the state judiciary was aware of the challenges faced by such inmates and was working towards addressing it.
According to her: “We have heard your complaints and you can be rest assured that we are working towards addressing them. By next week, we are having a meeting with magistrates to address some of these issues including bail conditions. We would be signing a new policy regarding fines and sentencing guidelines on cases before the court. Thereafter, I will be signing a new policy regarding fines and sentencing guidelines on cases before our courts.”
Earlier in his welcome address, the Deputy Comptroller of Prisons in charge of Ikoyi Prisons, Tolu Ogunsakin, expressed appreciation to the Chief Judge for her commitment to the release of deserving inmates.
Ogunsakin, however, appealed to the Chief Judge to assist the prison authorities in its decongestion efforts by accelerating trial and adopting community service for minor offences.
According DCP Ogunsakin Ikoyi Prison with normal lockup capacity of 800 inmates was presently housing 2, 752 inmates, 2261 of the inmates awaiting trial while 491 had been convicted.