By Aluta News
Aug 10, 2023
The Controller General, Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS), Mr Haliru Nababa, has appealed to all stakeholders and the general public to accept and welcome ex-offenders into the society.
Nababa made the call during the International Conference on Prisoners Justice in commemoration of the International Prisoners Justice Day on Thursday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Prisoners’ Justice Day is a solidarity movement that takes place annually on Aug. 10 and the theme this year is “Enhancing Global response for prisoners justice.”
The movement began in Canada in 1974 in support of prisoners’ rights and to remember all the people who have died of unnatural deaths while incarcerated.
Nababa was represented by the the Deputy Controller General, DCG, Finance and Account Department, Mr Abdullahi Magaji.
The NCoS boss said that stigmatisation of ex-offenders was indeed a challenge to modern corrections, as it was counter-productive and had a way of pushing them back to the way of crime.
He said that the inmates had gone through various reformatory and rehabilitation programmes while in custody, thereby changing their orientation and making them better citizens.
“I appeal to all stakeholders, and indeed the public, to open their arms to ex-offenders who have experienced total behavioural change as a result of the reformatory tools they subjected themselves to, while in custody, ” he said.
Nababa emphasised that the service, beyond keeping offenders out of circulation, provided a variety of treatment regimes for them, based on their individual risks and needs assessment.
This, he said, include educational advancement opportunities for those with the capacity; sundry vocational skills acquisition; modern agricultural and farming techniques; psychological treatments; guidance and counseling; sports and recreation; and religious activities.
“Of significant note is the admirable partnership the Service has enjoyed with the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) since the year 2012.
“This is where hundreds of inmates have bagged several academic qualifications including a PhD, with free tuition fees. Same goes for Yewa College of Education, Ogun State, just to mention a few.
“For inmates who undertake vocational skills training, the After-Care Scheme of the Service, as resources permit, provide them with starter-packs to begin their trades upon discharge.
“This systematically smoothens the reintegration process, ” he said.
Highlights of the event were presentation of awards to deserving personalities who had helped in global response for inmates justice and certificates of participation in the panel Discussion.
NAN reports that Nababa was given an an Excellent Leadership Award, with the Principal Staff Officer (PSO) NCoS, Mr Mamman Salisu, also receiving Excellent Service Award.