The Nigerian Correctional Service has confirmed 1,844 inmates were set free during Monday’s attacks on its facilities in Owerri, Imo state by gunmen.
Describing how they were freed, Public Relations Officer of the Service, Francis Enobore explained that the attackers stormed the facilities at about 0215 hours on Monday April 5, 2021. He said they “gained entrance into the yard by using explosives to blast the administrative block.”
“They were said to have arrived the centre in their large number in several Hilux pick-up vans and Sienna Buses armed with sophisticated weapons and immediately engaged the security personnel on duty in a fierce gun battle.
“They eventually detonated the explosive to gain entrance.
Enobore explained as at the last count, six inmates voluntarily returned to the facility while 35 inmates refused to escape.
Meanwhile the Nigerian Correctional Service has begun a comprehensive investigation into the incident and in collaboration with other security organizations in a bid to recapture the fleeing inmates.
It however appealed to the good citizens of Imo State and indeed Nigerians not to panic but volunteer to provide useful intelligence that will facilitate the recovery effort as the security of custodial centres in the country remains sacrosanct.