Pretrial detention accounts for 75% of prison inmates; NULAI expresses concern about facility overcrowding.

The Network of University Legal Aid Institutions (NULAI) has expressed concern about the prevalence of overcrowding in Nigerian correctional facilities as a result of the country's pretrial detention culture.

Prof. Ernest Ojukwu, president of the legal advocacy group, stated that approximately 75% of inmates in the country are pretrial detainees.

Prof. Ojukwu, who was represented by NULAI Executive Director Mukhtar Nasiru at an event on 'Reforming Pretrial Detention in Nigeria (RPDN)' in Abuja on Thursday, noted that the figure has been consistent.

He said, “What I mean by 75% is that for every 100 people in the correctional centre, 75% of them are pretrial detainees.”

”This means that their cases have not been decided nor have they been convicted. Only 25 per cent fall under those convicted.

NULAI revealed that the group had in five years, resolved about 1,400 pretrial detention cases in the Federal Capital Territory and Keffi, Nasarawa State.

”Over 500 law students have been able to support pro bono lawyers to intervene in pre-trial detention cases and over 1,400 cases have been resolved” he explained.

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