Prison Comptroller Seeks Mutual Reintegration Of Discharged Inmates
* Group Decries Alleged Women Exclusion In Ondo Politics
The Nigerian Prisons Service (NPS), Ondo State Command, has urged the general public to ensure mutual integration for discharged inmates, so as to help stem the rising crime record in the state.
While speaking to journalists in Akure, the State Comptroller of Prisons, Mr. Osayande Amadin, emphasised that crime is on the rise in the state due to an all time increase in the number of inmates in their custody.
Also, a women right group, Ondo State Women Must Count, has expressed dissatisfaction over the perceived marginalisation of women in the recent appointment of Local Government Council caretakers by Governor Olusegun Mimiko.
This is contained in the statement made available to journalists in Akure by the National Coordinator of the group, Olamide Falana, who accused Governor Mimiko of a deliberate attempt to push women out of politics.
According to Osayande, Nigerian Prison is one of the criminal justice systems, adding that, “the process of reformation starts right from the day a convict is brought to the prison. By doing this, we keep those deviant elements from the society through the various corrective mechanisms provided to make them more useful to the society and nation at large.”
The Comptroller informed that the inmates are trained and empowered with several skill acquisition programmes such as carpentry, barbing, carving, tailoring and other vocational and technical businesses that will enable them add value to themselves and the society at large. “The way the prisoners came in, by the time they are leaving, they are changed to the extent that he/she would not want to go back to crime but prefers to leave a law abiding life and contribute his own quota to the society,” Osayande said.
However, there are some discharged inmates, who have served several jail terms and reconvicted for numerous crime counts, which the Comptroller attributed to the failure of the society. “The problem is the society.
It’s not that the prison has not done its work in reforming those criminals, but the society refuses to accept them. The society does not accept them; they are hostile to them.
Despite the skills they acquired in prison, they are still unemployed.” Osayande tasked every sector of the society on adequate integration of the discharged prisoners into the society for a normal life.
He appealed to every member of the society to complement the integration moves of NPS in reconciling the ex-convicts with their families and the society at large, so that they can be more responsible citizens and productive.
Meanwhile, in a statement made available to journalists in Akure, the National Coordinator of the women group, Olamide Falana explained that, “Ondo State Women Must Count is a pressure group that insists on the political rights of women based on its belief that women must count beyond voting rights to inclusiveness in governance process.
We hereby protest the continuous, deliberate and unfortunate marginalisation of women in Ondo state, which is even more evident in the recent appointment and swearing of 16 Local Government Council caretaker bosses, who are all men. In the same vein, the wife of the President, Mrs. Aishat Buhari, recently vented her displeasure in Abuja during the reception organised in honour of Rotimi Amaechi, the former governor of Rivers State.
Mrs. Buhari expressed great dissatisfaction over the decline in the number of female representatives in the 8th Assembly, which she said negates the objectives of 35 per cent affirmative action towards 2019.
In response, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Mimiko, Eni Akinsola, refuted the allegation, stating emphatically that the present administration is the most gender sensitive and has involved women in politics since its creation in 1976.
He noted that the Mimiko administration produced the first female speaker of the state Assembly, Jumoke Akindele, who got a second term ticket and still reelected as the third most influential personality in the state.
According to Akinsola, aside ministries, agencies and other government parastatals that statutorily have preference for women appointees, Barrister Bolanle Olafunmiloye and Banke Sutton, the chairman of Ondo State Micro-credit Agency (OSMA), who retains her job while others lost theirs recently are part of Mimiko’s cabinet.
The Press chief distanced Mimiko from the alleged imposition of the 16 council caretakers, on Monday to be specific, saying it was a decision made by the people in their various grassroots, through the recommendation of a popular choice to the governor.