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Correctional service clears official involved in Abuja market

The Nigeria Correctional Service has exonerated its officjal, Usman Magaji, who shot one Ibrahim Yahaya, resulting in the civil unrest and mob action witnessed at the popular Wuse Market in Abuja on Tuesday.

The Police Public Relations Officer, FCT Command, Josephine Adeh, said late Yahaya, having been convicted by a Federal Capital Territory mobile court, was being taken to prison when he jumped off the vehicle and tried to escape before he was shot.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that one Ibrahim Yahaya ‘27 years’ was apprehended by operatives of the Abuja Environmental Protection Board Task Force and was taken before a mobile court which sits every Tuesday in Wuse Market, and he was convicted.

“Suspect alongside others were being conveyed to the prison when he reportedly jumped from the vehicle and took to his heels in an attempt to escape. Two armed corrections personnel who were in the vehicle went after him and in the process, shot him. The said Ibrahim Yahaya was immediately rushed to a nearby hospital where doctors on the ground confirmed him dead,” she said.

As a result, protesters attacked a police station and set some cars on fire at the popular Wuse Market in Abuja.

Reacting, the spokesperson NCoS FCT Command, Adamu Duza, in a statement obtained by our correspondent on Wednesday described the incident as unfortunate.

Duza however stated that the officjal acted within the precinct of the law to prevent the inmate from escaping.

The statement read “The Nigerian Correctional Service wishes to condole with the family of the deceased inmate who was shot by an armed squad personnel on Tuesday, 12th March, 2024, at Wuse in Abuja, FCT.

“The incidence which led to pandemonium around Wuse in FCT is unfortunate and regretted. However, it is important to note that the personnel acted within the precinct of the law to prevent the inmate from escaping.

“Section 20 of the Nigerian Correctional Service Act 2019 empowers correctional officers to use firearm to disable an escaping inmate. It is unfortunate that in the process of disabling the said escapee, he lost his life.”.

He sympathised with Nigerians who incurred losses as a result of the incident at the Wuse Market.

The spokesperson stated, “The Nigerian Correctional Service is assuring the public of the safe and secure custody of all those legally interned as well as humane treatment of all inmates in its custody.

“The Service wishes to sympathise with all those who incurred losses as a result of the pandemonium that followed.”

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