The authorities at Kirikiri female correctional centre have explained why Chidinma Ojukwu, who is standing trial over the murder of Michael Usifo Ataga, Chief Executive Officer of Super TV, was allowed to contest and be crowned Miss Cell 2022.
The beauty pageant was held at the Kirikiri female correctional centre to commemorate International Women’s Day, with this year’s theme: “BreakingTheBias”.
Authorities of the Nigerian Correctional Service Kirikiri explained that it permitted the 300-level Mass Communication student of the University of Lagos (UNILAG) alongside other inmates to contest in the pageant as one of several activities built to mark the Day.
The Command’s Public Relations Officer (PRO) Rotimi Oladokun in a statement said that the pageant was open to all female inmates, irrespective of whether they are convicted or awaiting trial.
Speaking on the pictures of Chidinma Ojukwu winning the pageant that have flooded the Internet, Oladokun said “I haven’t seen the pictures you are talking about. But in line with International Women’s Day, the female custodial facilities commemorated International Women’s Day with inmates, various inmates without distinction or discrimination against anybody – an inmate is an inmate.
“All the inmates in different cell blocks presented various programmes. Some did theatre presentations, others drama, some poetry, some beauty pageant, some drawings, paintings, comedy. So, various blocks won. It was just like an inter-cell block event.
“There were lots of presentations. It was not an individual thing. It was just the facility’s way of trying to reform the inmates, those still in custody,” he said.