CLAIM: Rauf Aregbesola said the least paid daily upkeep of an American prisoner is higher than Nigeria’s minimum wage.
MOSTLY TRUE: Foreign news reports as well as documents from the Department of Justice corroborate the claim. However, the figures used by the Minister of Interior were actually understated!
On October 19, The Punch newspaper publication on Rauf Aregbesola has been making the rounds. The Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola made the statement during the Interior 2020 budget defense session; amid correspondence from members of the Senate and House of Representatives.
The statement: “… the least daily upkeep spent on a prisoner in America was N31,000”. He further added that the amount was higher than the N30,000- the current national minimum.
The claim is actually reminiscent of a report by Daily Mail last year. The United Kingdom publisher- Mail Online revealed that: “California spends $8.6bn a year on its prison system, more than any other state (in the United States), averaging $64,642 per inmate.”
This means that with its total inmates’ population of 133,040, a sum of $177.10 (N63,756.49) is spent on each Californian inmate daily (at N360/$1, Bureau De Change rates).
As at January 31, 2019, the US Federal Bureau of Prisons had a budget of $7.141bn for its 180,210 federal offenders. This was according to a US Department of Justice document seen by our reporter.
When the figures are broken down per prisoner, it comes to $39,626 (N14,265,360) yearly; and $108.56 (N39,081.60) daily per inmate respectively (at N360/$1, Bureau De Change rates).
For a state like New York, its 2019 executive budget was $3.295bn. New York has one of the highest number of prison inmates in the US, over 45,363. This is according to a Fact Sheet from the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision (DOCCS); and the State agency’s 2019 appropriations.
Quantitatively, per prisoner, it amounts to $72,636.29 (N26,149,064.40) yearly; and $199 (N71,640) daily per inmate respectively (at N360/$1, Bureau De Change rates).
This fact-check is an edited version with the original written by Daily Trust; as part of our ongoing partnership with their newsroom.