By Lesley Muosowo Otu
Over 80 inmates who gunmen aided to escape from the Owerri Custodial Centre have voluntarily returned.
This was revealed by a source in the Nigerian Correctional Service.
This may not be unconnected with the promise made by the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, that the Federal Government will pardon those inmates that willingly return to the centre.
According to the source, about 17 of the inmates returned on Tuesday, while more reportedly returned on Wednesday.
Although they are mainly those on awaiting trial, with less prison term and those who are about to complete their terms, have returned so far.
The source said as of Wednesday evening, about 42 inmates had returned, bringing the total number of returnees to 80.
”The problem we’re having is that none of the hardened and condemned prisoners (HCI) who escaped has returned, and this isn’t exclusive to this prison break.
“This is understandable because it will take a miracle for a person who knows that his execution can take place any moment, to return after his freedom was given to him cheaply by those who broke into the facility,” the source said.
Recall, the police fingered members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) as the unknown gunmen who attacked the Correctional facility and freed 1,844 inmates on Monday.
It is expected with the amnesty announced by the Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, more of the escapees would return back to the facility to continue their terms.
“Most of the returnee inmates were escorted back by their parents, lawyers and relations.
“We are expecting that more will return by the weekend,” the source added.