145 Inmates Escape From koton-Kafe Prison In Kogi State

About 145 inmates in the 80-year-old Koton-Karfe prison at about 10pm on Sunday escaped from the prison when the gunmen gained entry into the prison by blowing up its iron bars with an improvised explosive device.

A male prison officer and an inmate were injured while another inmate   was   found dead after the attackers left.

Twelve of those who fled were said to have returned to the prison under controversial circumstances. 

A prison said on Monday that the 12 returned of their own volition but the Nigeria Prisons Service Public Relations Officer, Ope Fatinikun, said they were captured.

Fatinikun added, ‘‘Unknown gunmen invaded Koton- Karfe prison between 9.30am and 10pm and immediately it happened, the acting Comptroller-General of Prisons, Aminu Suley,   informed the Inspector-General of Police, Suleiman Abba, and the Chief of Defence Staff, Alex Badeh, and they ordered policemen and soldiers to beef up security around the prison and to arrest the fleeing inmates.”

The gunmen were said to have also   broken some of the prison’s walls before vandalising its record office.

A source who pleaded anonymity said sounds of gunshots caused     panic close to the prison which is located on the Lokoja-Abuja Road.

According to him, the gunmen operated unchallenged for hours   before security operatives arrived in the prison after they had left.

The comptroller-General of the NPS   told   journalists when he visited the Prison in company with   Governor   Idris Wada on Monday that the gunmen forcibly freed the inmates.

He said that 26 of the inmates were convicts   while 119 were   awaiting trial for different offences.

He lamented the congestion of the prison and pleaded with Wada to prevail on the judiciary to quicken  the trial of those on awaiting list.

Wada said he would invoke his power of prerogative of mercy to set free some of the inmates .

He said that he would also urge   the chief judge of the state to free some of the inmates.

The governor said security operatives were prompt in their response when they were alerted, adding that it was regrettable that much damage had been done before their arrival.

He also decried the deterioration of the prison, saying it was not good for human habitation.

The governor promised to provide beddings for the inmates who had been forced to live in sub-human conditions.

Wada urged the Federal Government to expedite action on the new Koto-karfi prison. He added that when the   prison was completed, the old building which was established in 1934 would become a tourism centre.

The Koton-Karfe prison was   attacked in February 2012 by   Boko Haram members who freed 119 inmates.


Chris Kehinde Nwandu is the Editor In Chief of CKNNEWS || He is a Law graduate and an Alumnus of Lagos State University, Lead City University Ibadan and Nigerian Institute Of Journalism || With over 2 decades practice in Journalism, PR and Advertising, he is a member of several Professional bodies within and outside Nigeria || Member: Institute Of Chartered Arbitrators ( UK ) || Member : Institute of Chartered Mediators And Conciliation || Member : Nigerian Institute Of Public Relations || Member : Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria || Fellow : Institute of Personality Development And Customer Relationship Management || Member and Chairman Board Of Trustees: Guild Of Professional Bloggers of Nigeria

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