As an effective measure to address security challenges confronted by prison wardens while conveying inmates to and from courts, courts in Delta State would henceforth give priority to hearing criminal and custody cases. 

The state Chief Judge, Honourable Justice Tessy Diai dropped the hint at Agbor custodial centre today during her continuation of jail delivery exercise of the second quarter that commenced last week.

"The issue of giving priority in criminal and custody matters will be taken care of. I had promised that the Chief Registrar will issue a circular to all judges and magistrates dealing with custody matters," she disclosed.

Justice Diai who released one inmate at the Agbor center out of 110 warrants reviewed, assured that though most cases in some courts were custody cases, the issue would be given the needed attention it deserved so that correctional officers and inmates were not exposed to unnecessary security risk in the course of moving and returning inmates to custody.

Responding to an appeal for vehicles made by the Deputy Controller of Corrections, Donatus Ezugwu, the Chief Judge disclosed that she had intimated the Governor on the matter during the first quarter visit, assuring that Governor Ifeanyi Okowa would soon do something about it, as promised.

Mr. Ezugwu had earlier in his welcome address thanked the Governor, Senator Dr. Arthur Okowa for his quick intervention when the perimeter wall of Agbor Custodial Centre collapsed on Monday, May 9 as a result of torrential rainfall.

The Deputy Controller advocated for an accelerated hearing and granting of bail to deserving inmates to help decongest the facility and enhance the quick dispensation of justice.

The only discharged inmate at the Agbor Custodial centre, Florence Ebie, 47, had been in custody for over two months for an offence of murder allegedly committed by his son. 

According to her, when the Police could not apprehend the culprit who ran away after the crime she was arrested and incarcerated till date when the Chief Judge ordered her release based on the Director of Public Prosecutions' advice.

She thanked God and Justice Diai for regaining her freedom.

Agbaragu Timothy, Esq.

Functioning Director,

Protocol/PR Department,

High Court of Justice,


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