A total of 126 condemned persons are waiting for a date with the hangman in Jos Prison, a News Agency of Nigeria investigation has shown.
A breakdown of the figure shows that Benue has the highest number of 32 condemned criminals, followed by Gombe, with 23.
The details further show that Yobe has 21, Plateau, 14, while Kogi and Adamawa have 13 and eight respectively. Taraba and Bauchi states have four condemned criminals each, while some other states have between one and two.
A senior official of the Jos prison services, headquarters of the North-Central and North-East zones of the service, told NAN that some of the convicts had appealed their sentences, while others had exhausted all legal opportunities for a reprieve.
According to the official, the prison, with a total of 564 inmates, has established a separate compound for the condemned convicts. “We used to have all the prisoners in one compound, but a different compound was carved for the condemned convicts when some of them became uncontrollable,” the source added.
The source alleged that the attitude of the condemned criminals had become a major source of concern for the prisons authorities and the workers, and called on the respective state governors to exercise their powers to help the situation.
“In fact, the Jos prison authorities have applied for the transfer of 50 of the condemned criminals to other prisons, to ease the pressure here.
“The governors have the powers to order for the execution of the prisoners or grant them amnesty. I will appeal that such powers be used to ease the pressure on the prison system.
“Some of the inmates have actually shown remorse and I believe some will be good citizens if they are granted amnesty,” the source said.