The controller general of the Nigerian Correctional Service (formerly Nigerian Prison Services), Ja’afaru Ahmed has denied claims of planning to arrest investigative journalist Fisayo Soyombo, who exposed the rot in Nigeria’s criminal justice system.
Commenting on the documentary which exposed “drug abuse, sodomy, bribery, pimping and cash and carry operations” in Ikoyi prison, Ahmed said those found guilty of the allegations would be punished.
A statement released on Tuesday evening read “The attention of the Nigerian Correctional Service has been drawn to allegations of drug abuse, sodomy, bribery, pimping and cash and carry operations in Ikoyi Custodial Centre, Lagos.
“In view of the gravity of the allegations, the Controller General, Ja’afaru Ahmed has set up a high powered panel to immediately commence full investigations into the matter in order to establish the authenticity of the report, identify and bring the culprits to book if found guilty of the allegations.
“The CG who gave the directive in his office in Abuja today stated that the Service is willing to work with the general public as well as relevant stakeholders in the justice sector to actualize the policy objectives of transforming the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) into a modern reformatory institution that operates in line with best international practices.”
Describing investigative journalists as the agency’s partners who seek the development of the nation, Ahmed stated that they have no plans of arresting or prosecuting Fisayo who went into hiding.
“Investigative journalists are partners, who seek the development of the nation, and called for more of such findings aimed at reforming the institution for better service delivery,” he said.
“He therefore called for more constructive engagement with the media and the general public with a view to strengthening the implementation of the Nigerian Correctional Service Act, 2019.”