by Chukwudi Akasike, Port Harcourt
AT least two inmates of Federal Prisons in the Ahaoda West Local Govrnment Area of Rivers State have been shot dead by security operatives while attempting to escape from the prison.
Our correspondent learnt on Sunday that the two inmates attempted to escape through the ceiling before they were stopped by policemen.
It was further learnt that other inmates, who sensed that security agents had been alerted, immediately retreated.
The incident, which occurred at about 5pm on Saturday, caused panic on the prisons premises.
A prison source, who confided in our correspondent, said, “An attempted jailbreak has occurred at Federal Prisons in Ahoada on 27th October, 2012 at about 1700hrs.
“The inmates had attempted breaking out unlawfully from custody when men of Ahoada Police Area Command and personnel of other security agencies were alerted and swiftly mobilised to the scene and cordoned off the perimeter fence of the prison.
“Consequently, the escaping inmates retreated to the confines of the prisons. Two inmates who tried to escape through the ceiling were shot at to prevent their escape,” a source stated.
It was also learnt that some prison inmates were relocated from Bayelsa State to the prisons in Ahaoda, a situation that sparked a protest by the inmates in the area.
Some of the inmates had capitalised on the rowdy situation within the prison in Ahaoda West to make the escape attempt.
The Controller of Port Harcourt Prisons, Mr. Jerome Babalola, who spoke in a telephone interview with THE PUNCH, said the information at his disposal was sketchy, promising to react to the issue tomorrow (Monday).
Babalola said, “By tomorrow, I will speak on the issue. Investigation is still on and the information we have is sketchy.
“You know it is not good to say one thing today and say another one tomorrow. One has to get his facts before speaking on matters like this.”
Confirming the incident on Sunday, the State Police Public Relations Officer, Mr. Ben Ugwuegbulam, explained that two inmates were killed during an attempt to escape from the prison.
Ugwuegbulam disclosed that the situation had since been brought under control. “Ahoada Police Area Command swiftly mobilised to the scene and, together with other security agencies, cordoned off the entire perimeter of the prisons.
“Consequently, the escaping inmates retreated to the confines of the prisons. Two of the inmates that tried escaping through the ceiling were shot at to prevent their escape and were fatally wounded in the process,” he said.
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