Former Governor of Benue State and Senator representing Benue East Senatorial district, Gabriel Suswam has stated that Nigerian politicians must spend one or two days in prison to become better leaders.
The Senator who is currently being prosecuted by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for alleged N3.1 billion fraud while he was Governor of Benue State, said this while contributing to a motion on prison decongestion by Uche Ekwunife, senator representing Anambra central. Recalling his experience in prison, Suswam stated it will be nice for Nigerian leaders to spend some time there to understand the challenges in the correctional facilities. He said;
“I want to support this motion based on my experience. When I left priosn, I recommended that for people to be proper leaders in this country, at least each and everyone of us must spend one or two days in prison,” he said.
Lawan interjected and jokingly said:“anyone who served as a governor?”
“Yes and deputy governor probably,” he added, before Suswan continued.
“I went there, they took me there in the night. The following day in the morning, the entire prison knew I was there.
“I sat down there from morning till evening because there were a lot of young people there.
“And it might interest you to know that what they spend years in prison for… are demeanour you can easily dismiss. There was a young man who has spent 10 years there for just a problem of N10,000.
“Various individuals were there on very minor offences that the police can afford to correct them and send them home.
“I made it a point of duty that when I left that place, for the next one month, I took close to 20 young people out of that place. It didn’t take anything, just pay the money and send them back to court.”
The motion for decongestion of prisons was adopted by the senate who directed relevant committees to ensure a proper oversight of correctional centres in Nigeria.