LAGOS State will partner its newly sworn-in Acting Chief Judge and the Federal Government to find a lasting solution to the problem of prison congestion, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said yesterday.
The governor spoke while swearing-in the state’s acting chief judge, Justice Kazeem Alogba, at the Lagos House.
Sanwo-Olu said the issue of prison congestion has been a major challenge to the state judicial system, saying it was not acceptable.
“The current situation where we have over 70 per cent of prison inmates as awaiting trial is not acceptable and it is a shame to our judicial system,” he said.
The governor told Alogba that the judiciary and the state as a whole would benefit from his wealth of knowledge and experience “as each of the three arms of government work together to achieve our collective dream of a greater Lagos”.
“We have absolute confidence in your ability and capacity to sustain and build on the enviable system, which the state has built over the years, particularly starting from 1999 under the administration of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu with the introduction of critical reforms in the judiciary.
“You have always been part of that process and contributed immensely to the implementation of the reform. We believe you will use your wide range of experience to build on that system.”
Justice Alogba promised that the judiciary would ensure that the governor achieves his goals.
He stated that it would be easy to solve the major problems confronting the state, especially the traffic and environment problems like driving against traffic and indiscriminate dumping of refuse.
According to him, the solution is in enforcing the laws, advising that offenders should be made to serve their sentences where they committed the offence.
Doing so, the acting chief judge said, would make people feel ashamed and the number of offenders would go down since nobody wants to be identified as an ex-convict.
He said those who dump refuse indiscriminately should be made to sweep and clear the refuse in the locality where they were caught doing so.
Justice Alogba said with him at the helm of affairs of the state judiciary, there would be zero tolerance for corruption and corrupt practices.
He solicited for the assistance of the governor to achieve his objectives to raise the bar of the state judiciary.