Yesterday, twenty Boko Haram suspects awaiting trial in Kuje Maximum prison, protested what they described as sluggish justice system in the country. Thus, they demanded to be re-united with their families as neither the government nor the prison's authorities have made efforts to try them a year after their arrest.
This is even as only 116 out of about 545 inmates are convicted at the Kuje Maximum prison, which is already above the capacity of the facility, leaving it with a total of 429 awaiting trial inmates, while only 10 of the inmates are condemned criminals with five sentenced to life imprisonment.
The inmates explain they were arrested in Kano and Borno states (Maiduguri) respectively since January 2012, on the suspicion of having connection with the Boko Haram. They maintain they have been in detention for a period of one year without being tried by a court of competent jurisdiction.
The inmates, who were visibly angry and pained, pleaded with the Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro, who undertook a five-hour intensive on-the-spot assessment of the prison facilities to provide additional operational vehicles to the Prisons Service, so as to facilitate their movement to court for trial, and added that it would also reduce cases of overcrowding.