Isaac Ombe, Yenagoa
Governor Douye Diri of Bayelsa state has graneds amnesty to nine inmates at the state’s Nigeria Correctional Centre, Okaka, in Yenagoa.
Governor Diri who made the pronouncement when he addressed freed inmates during his visit to the centre, on Tuesday, also advised them to change their ways and become responsible members of society.
The governor gave antidote to decongest the correctional centre as reduction in crime expressed displeasure over the number of inmates in custody.
According to him, it was his constitutional duty to grant amnesty to inmates based on recommendations from the Committee on Prerogative of Mercy.
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His words, “Whereas you have all made written applications seeking for this discretionary exercise by the government of Bayelsa State, I have also in consultation with the Committee on Prerogative of Mercy and in accordance with the laws of Bayelsa State and in exercise of my constitutional powers as the Governor of Bayelsa State, hereby grant you mercy.
“I do not believe we should have this centre congested with our brothers and sisters. In other words, the propensity for crime and criminality must be reduced. That is the only way we can decongest the Okaka Correctional Centre.
“If we grant amnesty and there is still the propensity to continue in crime, no amount of jail delivery can decongest this prison.
“My advice to you is that you change your ways. Change your approach to life and become responsible members of society and contribute to the good image of Bayelsa State.”
Chief Judge of Bayelsa State, Justice Kate Abiri, in her remark, thanked the governor for the visit and expressed optimism that he would help decongest the centre.