News - South South - Akwa Ibom Updated: March 25, 2023

Akwa Ibom Chief Justice Pardons 45 Inmates

By Lawrence Agbo
March 25, 2023

The Chief Judge of Akwa Ibom, Justice Ekaette Obot, released 45 inmates from prisons all around the state on her visit to the Correctional Centers.

The Chief Judge revealed this while briefing reporters in Uyo on Friday following a three-day facility visit to the state's correctional facilities.

Obot demanded that the Eket Correctional Center be moved in order to relieve congestion and improve inmate supervision.

The top judge reportedly paid visits to the correctional center at Ikot Abasi, Eket, Ikot Ekpene, and Uyo, according to the NAN.

According to NAN, during the visit, three inmates from Ikot Abasi were pardoned, nine inmates from Eket were released and found not guilty, 11 inmates from Ikot Ekpene were also freed, while 22 inmates were released from the prisons in Uyo.


Several of the released inmates, according to the head judge, had served more time in the prisons than the punishment for the crime they were accused of.

According to Obot, some of the inmates had been housed in the institutions for four to five years without being brought before a court.

She urged the released inmates to start over, get involved in worthwhile endeavours, and abstain from crime because they might not have another chance.

The state's Ikot Abasi facility, according to the chief judge, is adequate, whereas Eket, which has a capacity of 123 but 300 convicts right now, is the worst.

“As I said at the beginning, Ikot Abasi was okay, and the capacity was not fully utilised.


"So, it was more organised than every other facility apart from Ikot Ekpene. Ikot Ekpene is the best facility we have in the state.

“Eket is the worst of all, it is limited in space and the number is overwhelming and they are not able to cater for the inmates there.

“I have suggested that the Custodial Centre’s authority in Abuja should negotiate with the Governor of the state and even the community for a good space to relocate that facility for better management of the inmates,” she said.

She voiced worry that the state's police and director of public prosecution would detain prisoners in detention facilities for years without charge or trial.

In order to prevent the collapse of the justice delivery system, the chief judge urged the police officers in charge of legal proceedings and the director of public prosecution to ensure vigilance in prosecution.


She cautioned the police against unjustified detention without a full investigation and without charging innocent people with a crime.

According to her, the affected person's constitutional rights were violated by such an arrest or incarceration.

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Lawrence Agbo

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