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Ahmed orders full compliance with Correctional Service Act

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[FILES] Controller General (CG) of Nigerian Correctional Service, Ja’afaru Ahmed. Photo: THEABUSITES

The Controller General (CG) of Nigerian Correctional Service, Ja’afaru Ahmed, has ordered full compliance with the 2019 Correctional Service Act to ensure that no aspect is ignored.

According to him, the compliance should start with capacity building of the personnel at all levels to acquaint them with the letters of the Act.

Ahmed, disclosed this yesterday in Owerri, Imo State, during the opening of a three-day Training of Trainers (TOT) on Non-Custodial Measures for Correctional Training Institutions in Enugu/Owerri, organised by Chief Executive Officer of UCHFEM Consultants, Uche Owete, and supported by the Swiss government.

Represented by the Zonal Coordinator in charge of Zone ‘E’ (Imo, Abia, Cross River, Akwa Ibom, Rivers and Bayelsa states), ACG Ifeanyi Amaliri, the CG noted that the new Act had two arms (Custodian and Non-Custodian), adding that the paradigm shift to non-custodian service places premium to inmates with minor sentences that are subjected to community service.

Resource persons from the National Judicial Commission (NJC), National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), the correctional service, among others, drilled participants on weapon handling, internal security and ways of handling inmates’ matters.

The event was attended by the Commandant, Correctional Training School, Enugu, Mrs. Maureen Mazi; Commandant, Correctional Armed Squad Training School, Owerri, DCG Nicholas Obiako; and trainers in the schools, among other retired and serving officials of the service.

Ahmed said the training was structured to create awareness on the new Act at Correctional Staff College, Kaduna; Correctional Training School, Kaduna; Correctional Training College, Kirikiri, Lagos; and Correctional Academy, Ijebu Igbo, Ogun State.

His words: “The name has changed since July 2019. The Controller General of the Correctional Service did not waste time in operationalising it, making sure that the contents of that law is being practised. It has changed our status quo, scope and area of coverage, as well as expanded our base of oversight.

“We have more than 30,000 staff. We are now on efficient training, awareness training to showcase areas of importance, making sure that people were consigned in the prisons, as it were, but that was our mandate then.

“Our mandate has shifted ground. Although we are maintaining custodian culture, the mandate has shifted to non-custodian. One can be sentenced to parole, restorative justice, where matters are settled after making a sentence on somebody.”

You can ask them to be sweeping the court, the road, the Government House, that is the non-custodian.”

On his part, Owete said the training would focus on parole, probation, community service, restorative justice measures and response to the new law among others, commending the government and embassy of Switzerland for the funding.


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