On Saturday morning, a major jail break was averted in Delta State at the Okere prison near Warri. The incident was preceded by a riot at the prison which quickly turned chaotic.
SaharaReporters learned that there has been serious tension mounting around the prison since Monday, over the alleged high handedness of Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Jude Okoro, which led to demands by the inmates that the officer be transferred to another prison.
Speaking to SaharaReporters, prison sources disclosed that the inmates had complained bitterly about a lack of water, electricity, and the high handedness of ACP Okoro who always confiscated items donated to the inmates by charities for his own use and mailing these items to his home State of Imo.
It was learned that ASP Okoro had recently assaulted an inmate for fetching water in the yard following which the inmates requested to meet with him on Monday through the Prison keeper to register their grievances. However, Mr. Okoro refused to make himself available .
It was also gathered that the already inmates demanded to see the Controller of Prisons in the State on Friday. Unfortunately all of their efforts were rebuffed and, as a result, the inmates began a hunger strike and then began to riot on Saturday morning.
In response to the riot, the driver of ASP Okoro was seen using teargas on the inmates and in reaction, the inmates destroyed the administrative building and some of their cells and demanded for the immediate sacking of ASP Okoro.
SaharaReporters learned that the situation was brought under control by the Nigerian Army, police, and prison warders. The incident caused a serious gridlock on the surrounding roads, and the perimeter walls of the prison were said to be taken over by stern looking security operatives.
At the time of filing this report, all efforts to reach the prison comptroller in the State remain unsuccessful, and no official statement on the incident has been made by the prison authorities in the State.