Five inmates at the Ikoyi Prison, now known as Ikoyi Custodial Centre, were on Monday morning, electrocuted.
The Controller General of Corrections, Ja’afaru Ahmed, confirmed the death of five inmates in the Ikoyi Medium Security Custodial Centre, Lagos.
Ahmed, in a statement on Monday, described the incident as tragic and unprecedented, adding that investigations were ongoing.
He noted that seven others were being treated in a hospital.
The minister of interior, Rauf Aregbesola, had ordered a probe of the incident.
In a statement issued by Jane Osuji, press secretary to the minister, Aregbesola said:
“The attention of the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has been drawn to an electrocution incident at the Ikoyi Medium Security Prison in Lagos,” the statement read.
“The Minister has directed a quick investigation into the root cause and the ministry will in the next few hours share a comprehensive update on the incidence.
“While we commiserate with the victims of the incidence, the minister has ordered immediate medical attention for those affected.”
But confirming the incident and the death toll, a statement by Ahmed and signed by the Controller of Corrections, Francis Enobore, read:
“Early this morning, the Controller General of Corrections, Ja’afaru Ahmed, received with the deepest grief, the unfortunate death of five inmates of Ikoyi Medium Security Custodial Centre, Lagos, as a result of an electrical fault in one of the cells. This is indeed tragic and most ill-fated.
“The CG, who visited the scene of the incident with the Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, noted that it was the first time in the history of the NCoS to experience such a disaster. He, therefore, ordered an immediate investigation into the sad incident with a view to taking necessary actions in order to forestall future occurrence.
“He commiserated with the families of the deceased inmates and prayed for quick recovery of the seven others that are receiving treatment in the hospital.
“The CG wishes to assure members of the public that inmates’ safety and humane custody will continue to be a priority in his administration. He further restates his commitment to pursue the policy thrust of the Federal Government at improving the general welfare of inmates with the deserved fervour.
“As of the time of the incident, Ikoyi Medium Security Custodial Center built in 1955 for 800 inmates, had a population of 3,113 with 2,680 as awaiting trial persons. The particular cell where the disaster occurred has a capacity for 35 but held 140 inmates.”