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The federal government has presented some working tools to some deserving ex-offenders that were trained in different vocations in the course of their incarceration in the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS).
Some of the ex-offenders had been trained in various vocations which includes carpentry, tailoring, electrical, barbing, hair dressing, masonry, laundry and welding and were presented tools accordingly.
While presenting the tools to the beneficiaries Wednesday at the national headquarters of the NCoS, Comptroller General of the service, Ja’afaru Ahmed, said its part of his agency’s mandate to promote public protection by providing assistance to offenders in order to ultimately facilitate their reformation, rehabilitation and eventual reintegration into the society as law-abiding and responsible citizens on discharge.
“The After-Care Scheme has over the years proven to be quite critical to the realization of the statutory mandates of the Service as aptly encapsulated in the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) Act, 2019 with particular reference to the reformation, rehabilitation and subsequent reintegration of inmates back to the society on discharge. This is largely because of the Scheme’s capacity to keep beneficiaries away from returning to life of crime.
“In the last few years under my watch, the Nigerian Correctional Service has been able to resuscitate and renovate old vocational workshops and also built new and modern Workshops and Farm Centres. Apart from promoting sundry vocational skills acquisition through industrial workshops and Agricultural/Farm Centres, we have also continued to partner with relevant stakeholders to promote Adult Remedial Education both at the Post Primary and Tertiary levels.”
According to Ja’afaru, some of the serving inmates wrote and even excelled in their WASC/GCE examinations while some others are pursuing Degree Programmes in different fields courtesy of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) which currently have various study centres in some Custodial Centres across the country.
“The Service is taking all these steps because the idea of incarceration for punishment alone has since been jettisoned the world over. The contemporary global penal trend is correction; hence the Nigerian Correctional Service is continuously engaging serving inmates on activities that have capacity to engender positive change in them.
“Furthermore, in order to boost the capacity of the Nigerian Correctional Service to train and prepare inmates for self-sustenance on discharge, we have recently embarked on Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) initiatives in the construction and management of the Service’s Industries and Workshops. The expectation is that when fully consummated, the partnerships would facilitate the activities towards reformation, rehabilitation and reintegration of inmates into the society on discharge.”
The Comptroller General, therefore called on all the beneficiaries to justify government’s huge investments in providing the vocational tools by working hard and being law-abiding citizens.
“Finally, I want to re-assure the Nation that the Nigerian Correctional Service is ever ready and committed to deliver on its statutory mandate. We therefore need the support of all stakeholders.”
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