See shocking pictures of Prisoners in Delta


JLAA undercover agents, led by Mr. Prince Gwamnishu Harrison, on a routine prison visitation in the Nigerian Prisons, Ogwashi uku, Delta state took pictures of the sorry state of Nigerian prisons and the inhuman conditions in which prisoners are kept in Nigerian prisons.

This pictures drew the attention of the Minister of Interior, Lt.-Gen. Abdulrahman Bello Dambazau (retd.).The Honourable Minister placed a call to us indicating interest to meet with the leadership of JLAA to discuss the pictures and the plight of inmates in that particular prison. Tomorrow , we shall conclude talks on the phone on modalities for the meeting with the Honourable Minister within the week if all goes well.

Going to prison in Nigerian is like dying with your eyes open. We've entered a disturbing period that promotes a retributionist, punitive attitude toward people in our society who haven't 'made it,' who are underdogs, who don't have the financial means that other people have, and who may have disabilities like mental illness and addictions to deal with. How can we begin to dismantle a system that feeds in the dark corners of our prejudices? How do we redefine education so that 30-50 percent of children do not drop out of school, thus ensuring that millions will end up in prison?

We live in a country that is addicted to incarceration as a tool for social control. As it stands now justice systems are extremely expensive, do not rehabilitate but in fact make the people that experience them worse and have no evidence based correlatives to reducing crime. Yet with that track record they continue to thrive, prosper and are seen as an appropriate response to citizen in trouble with the law. Only an addict would see that as an okay result.

There is a multi-headed, multi-tentacled monster out there devouring Nigerians who live in certain financial and class penury.. Our prison system is just one aspect of this menace in our criminal justice system, but it is an overwhelmingly damaging aspect.

Our job, in working to achieve fairness and equity, is to sound the alarm about the unjust criminal justice system and demand that our leaders and those in power act now to halt this destructive, unfair treatment of our brothers and sisters, especially of our children. They must be reminded that the degree of civilization in a society can be judged by entering its prisons.

Kingsley Ughe, General Counsel, Joint Legal Action Aids can be reached via


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