The Owerri Correctional Centre authorities have disclosed that some of the inmates that ran away have returned after gunmen early Monday morning broke into the facility and at the last count before going to the press six had returned, while 35 refused to escape.
One of the inmates, Pastor John-Valentine Ibekwe, on Tuesday, willingly returned to the centre.
Pastor Ibekwe, who hails from Awo-omama in Oru East Local Government Area of the state and the senior pastor of House of Solution and Deliverance Ministry Awo-Omama, was forced out of the prison in the early hours of Easter Monday when the yet-to-be identified hoodlums broke the prison.
It was gathered that in course of his being forced out, he (Ibekwe) had a dislocation on his right leg.
According to him, “As at 1:20am, we began to hear non-stop gunshots. We were afraid because we never knew what was taking place. The firing continued until the jail was forced open and we were asked to all leave the premises.”
He said when he got home that early morning, he immediately called his lawyer, who he said, advised him to go back to the correctional centre, adding that his case was not a severe or criminal matter.
He said, “What landed me in prison was a help I rendered to somebody. I did not commit any criminal offence. The lawyer, Mr. Alex Williams, told me to go back to the prison and that it would be better than absconding since he had been handling the matter. I respected him by voluntarily coming back.”
Mr. Alex William, who is the Chairman of South-East Lawyers Forum, advised others inmates forced out of the correctional centre to come back on their own in order for justice to take its course.