only used to read about this happening in foreign jurisdictions and I have seen
it done many times in Hollywood movies, but it’s great to note that there is now
a provision for it in our statutes and prisoners in Nigeria who been reformed
can particularly take advantage of it.
a parole is a totally new thing in Nigerian criminal law administration and the
closest we ever came to it was a state pardon by the Governor or maybe a prison
decongestion drive by the Chief Judge of the High Court of a State.
to the Black’s Law Dictionary, 10th Edition, parole is the
conditional release of a prisoner from imprisonment before the full sentence
has been served. Usually, it is granted for good behaviour on the condition
that the parolee regularly reports to the supervising officer.
provision of the law that has made parole possible in Nigerian prison system is
the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015. It provides in Section 468
Comptroller-General of Prisons makes a report to the court recommending that a
Sentenced and serving
his sentence in prison is of good behaviour; and
Has served at least one
third of his prison term, where he is sentenced to imprisonment for a term of
at least fifteen years or where he is sentenced to life imprisonment, the court
may, after hearing the prosecution and the prisoner or his legal representative,
order that the remaining term of his imprisonment be suspended, with or without
conditions, as the court considers fit, and the prisoner shall be released from
prison on the order.
A prisoner released
under subsection (1) of this section shall undergo a rehabilitation programme
in a Government facility or any other appropriate facility to enable him to be
properly reintegrated to the society.
of Prisons shall make adequate arrangement, including budgetary provision, for
thing that crosses my mind though is how the Comptroller will adequately
prepare such a facility if the prisons system remains underfunded as is alleged
in certain circles by prison officials. I hope the government can pay a lot of attention
to this, as it will ensure that our prison system is adequate in reforming
prisoners and that those who are reformed and well behaved are given another
opportunity at being better citizens in the society.