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Ooni visits Kuje Custodial Centre, secures release of 5 inmates

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.’I didn’t visit Emefiele’

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Blessing Akorowosi, Osogbo

As part of activities to celebrate his 8th coronation anniversary, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi paid a visit to the Kuje correctional centre in Abuja.

Ooni Ogunwusi visited the facility for a programme organised by Hopes Alive Initiative (HAI) under his chairmanship and secured the release of five inmates.

The five inmates were freed after fulfilling all requirements including payment of bail/fines through the assistance of the HAI, with a promise to keep an eye on them and empowering them in the trade they learned while in the Correctional Centre.

Addressing the gathering of inmates and prison’s officials, the monarch who was flanked by his Queen & Deputy Convener of Hopes Alive Initiative HAI Olori Temitope Enitan-Ogunwusi, explained that the best part of human life is the one spent to serve others particularly the poor and vulnerable individuals.

He noted that the inmates can live a better life after they leave the facility, urging them not to look down on themselves as God could give them a second chance.

His words, “We should always remember that God created all of us and that he is the God of second chance, we have seen in this country from prison to presidency, right from prison all the way to become the president of this country.

“So please do not write off yourselves, whatever the situation you might have found yourselves here remember that their is a God of second chance.

“I am here to tell you that there is a life after here, it does not end here and that is why you all must see this current phase of your life as a learning stage for the lessons with which you will live for life after here.

“I have not come here to tell you that it is not difficult but I am here to tell you that it is possible for you all to be better and be amongst the best members of the larger Nigerian society when you eventually leave here,” Ooni said.

Also, The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi, has denied news in circulation that he was at Kuje prison to visit embattled former Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele.

Speaking on behalf of the monarch on Wednesday, his spokesperson, Moses Olafare, said Oba Ogunwusi was at the correctional facility at the instance of a Non-Governmental Organisation, owned by one of his wives, Queen Temitope, Hopes Alive Initiative, HAI, which is on advocacy for the correction centre.

He said the programme, which was organised in partnership with Kuje correctional authority, centred around giving hope to inmates on reintegration into society after completing their terms, and the Ooni was part of it, in commemoration of his eighth anniversary.

“The intent of those spreading the news was to blackmail the monarch; there is nothing hidden about the event. In any case, the king never met Emefiale because it was an official event organised by the NGO in conjunction with the Kuje Correction Centre.

“The programme centres on giving hope to the inmate that, after serving out their terms, they still have hope to reintegrate back to the society. The Arole Ooni was invited to chair the event in commemoration of his eighth anniversary on the throne.

“What is exclusive about a public programme where different public figures spoke and representatives of the inmate also spoke? How then did the Ooni manage to meet Emefiele?

“We must be careful with how people spread falsehoods about people. The video of the event is available to the public. I am not even sure Emefiele attended the programme because he is only in detention and not an inmate yet, so why link the programme to Emefiele? It is simply to achieve blackmail, he added.

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