Friday, 28th January 2022
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CELSIR provides library to correctional centre

To improve the nation’s educational sector and change the narrative about inmates, the Centre for Legal Support and Inmate Rehabilitation

To improve the nation’s educational sector and change the narrative about inmates, the Centre for Legal Support and Inmate Rehabilitation (CELSIR) recently donated library to Medium Security Custodial Centre, Ikoyi, Lagos.

The facility, which is provided in partnership with Ford Foundation, is a 21-user library with resources that cut across different genres.

There is also an e-library section that has resources for inmates undertaking undergraduate and post-graduate programmes at the National Open University of Nigeria.

In her speech during the commissioning, Executive Director, CELSIR, Joke Aladesanmi, said the importance of a prison library could not be underestimated, saying that it is a proven fact that prison library has a high tendency of bringing positive development to the inmates.

Specifically, she said as a criminal defense lawyer, who have represented over one hundred accused persons, assisting inmates should go beyond legal representation adding that there is also need to emphasise rehabilitation of the inmates that would eventually be released back to society.

Continuing, she added, “our primary watchword as an organisation has been efficient and effective rehabilitation, that is the need to be deliberate and intentional about our approach in reaching out to the inmates.

We strongly believe that the quality of our approach is what makes the difference.

With this drive, CELSIR, in the past year has partnered with the correctional facility to provide educational and mental support to the inmates.

We have provided virtual classes for inmates enrolled for Joint Admission Matriculation Board and the General Certificate Examination.

CELSIR has also donated Solar Power to the facility to ensure the smooth running of the virtual class.

Inmates have also been supported with examination preparatory resources. All of this assistance culminated in the inmates’ excellent results, especially in the JAMB, where one of them scored 268.”

Similarly, Public Relations Officer, Nigerian Correctional Service, Lagos State Command, Rotimi Oladokun, who represented the Controller of Corrections, Lagos State Command, advised inmates to take advantage of the opportunity in training themselves instead of being idle.

Speaking in a similar vein, Director of Public Prosecution (DPP), Lagos State Ministry of Justice, Olayinka Adeyemi, advised them to key into the programme because it is one of the things the correction centre is made to do.

She said: “education is very important. You are getting it free of charge here, so please don’t waste this opportunity,” She commended the initiative of the CELSIR, adding that she would also donate law books to the library.

Representative of the Ford Foundation, Adesuwa Ighile, said the foundation is proud to be associated with CELSIR.

Ighile said inmates are often neglected in the society, hence the need to commend CEISIR’s effort.

She added that the library would assist greatly in rehabilitating the inmates.