Reports monitored by The Eagle Online in the early hours of Monday had it that there was heavy shooting at Kure Prisons in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
This allegedly followed a riot by the inmates.
Though details were still sketchy as at press time, the security operatives on duty had to embark on a shooting spree to prevent the inmates from escaping.
However, a law firm, claiming to be representing Charles Okah, who is in detention in the prison, said the shooting spree was to scare the inmates.
It said the shooting spree was to scare inmates, including Okah, who is known to have medical conditions.
The statement, signed by Timipa Jenkins Okponipere of First Law Solicitors, reads: “We are Solicitors to CHARLES TONBRAH OKAH, in particular, and the entire inmates of Kuje Medium Security Prison in Abuja (whom we shall hereinafter, collectively refer to as “our clients”)
“2. It is our clients’ brief that Kuje Prison is currently under attack from members of the Nigerian Prisons Service Armed Squad who are indiscriminately firing gun-shots and tear gas into the air.
“3. This has created pandemonium and violated the fundamental rights of the inmates, particularly, Mr. Charles Okah who has a known medical history which is incompatible with tear gas, gunshots, etc.
“4. We are, by virtue of this notice to Nigerians and the international community, particularly, AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL and GLOBAL WITNESS, making it clear that the Nigerian Prisons Service is already in breach of the fundamental rights of the inmates of Kuje Prison. Our clients therefore reserve the right to sue and seek redress for the breach.”
In the last few months, there had been riots in some Nigerian prisons.
The prisons in Kogi and Abia States readily comes to mind.
In Abia State, a number of prisoners were killed and injured in the bid to prevent the prisoners from escaping.
Some staff of the Nigerian Prisons Service have also been sacked as a result of the issues that led to the riots and the handling thereof.