It is well documented in literature that pre-trial detention has a variety of severe effects. Staying in pre-trial detention in prison not only creates legal uncertainty for the inmates, pre-trial also leads to congestion in prisons, it also negatively affects the psychological well-being of the inmates, the social and economic status of their families, and in the end the Nigerian society, as virtually all inmates will return to society at one point.
This lack of resources for resocialisation and rehabilitation programs means that inmates run the risk of ending up in prison again. At the same time, inmates suffer stigmatisation and social exclusion from society and communities. The general public often has very negative views about inmates, even of those awaiting trial who may not be found guilty, and is largely unaware of the dire situation inside prisons.
Being in detention for a long time without a trial, is also likely to affect trust in the justice system and government, exemplified by inmates saying: “The rich don’t go to jail”.