The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola has given a matching order to the Nigerian Correctional Service to ensure all fleeing inmates wherever they are recaptured.
He said their continued stay outside the Correctional centers was dangerous to the society, urging the service to deploy all means available to get them back into the custodian centers.
The minister also directed that the DNA of all the inmates at the custodian centers should be captured to have a true picture of their identities.
Aregbesola spoke at the retreat for senior officers of the Nigerian Correctional Service held in Sokoto on Monday.
He said, “In our desire to have greater control and ease the recapture of escaped inmates, it is very important to also have their DNA the moment they come into your care. The usefulness of this is more than recapturing escaped inmates. DNA will give you a near-absolute certainty on the identity of the inmates in your care, 99.99999 per cent, according to the experts.
“If you need to create a special unit, please do. You must make life difficult for them out there. I am directing you that you must take DNA of everyone in custody now. If we have not developed the capacity of our personnel to do so, we will.
“We must fashion out strategies to recapture them. We must use technology to capture these inmates, let us use everything we can, let the world knows we are committed.”
He also said the service should not be blamed for the attacks on correctional centers across the country, adding that personnel was trained to avert attacks from within.
Aregbesola stressed that the service had learnt from the experience, noting that the service was prepared for any attack both within and outside.
In his remarks, the NCoS Controller-General, Haliru Nababa, lamented that the custodial centers were being overstretched.
According to him, the current capacity of the 244 custodial facilities of the service should accommodate 58,278 as against the population of 75,000 inmates it was having.
He added that the service had put up some measures to prevent attacks on its centers across the country.
Nababa said, “Drawing from the above, the NCoS has taken measures that will forestall future attacks such as the formation and activation of the Rapid Response Team, initiate more intelligence sharing with other security agencies, the sensitization and encouragement of State governments to implement non-custodial measures as well as the scaling up of the capacity of Armed Squad and Intelligence personnel on the use if high calibre weaponry and intelligence gathering.”