By Soni Daniel, Northern Region Editor
The Nigerian Prison Service on Monday wielded the big stick against eight officials of the agency for various acts of indiscipline, which facilitated jailbreaks and compromised general safety of the prison inmates and workers nationwide in recent times.
It will be recalled that jailbreak had become frequent in parts of the country as the result of the compromise of set standards by recalcitrant prison officials, importing drugs and phones into the prison to aide inmates’ communication with the outsiders.
But on Monday, the Controller-General of Prisons, Jaáfaru Ahmed, formally approved the recommendation of the Zonal Disciplinary Committee for the dismissal of the eight junior officers for various cases of indiscipline.
According to a statement signed by the Prisons Public Relations Officer, Francis Enobore, a Deputy Controller of Prisons, the eight officers were found guilty of trafficking (smuggling) prohibited items such as mobile phones, marijuana, and other intoxicating substances into the prison yard for inmates.
The disciplinary letter which was signed by the officer in-charge of discipline CP O Agun Esq. on behalf of the Controller-General of the NPS, listed the dismissed officers as: Thomas Jatau and Mottallem J. Yari as being dismissed for trafficking in mobile phones while Mohammed Isah Jibril, Saleh Mohammed Dan’Azare, Umar Gusau, Mohammed Ali Ja’Oji, Saidu Ibrahim Gusau and PA 11 Maji Maiku were sacked for trafficking in marijuana and ntoxicating substances and other prohibited items.
Illegal access to mobile phones and other communication gadgets by prisoners has been of great concern to the management of the Prisons Service as various criminal activities have been perpetrated by inmates including facilitating jailbreaks and escapes.
Similarly, apart from the far-reaching health implications of exposing inmates to the use of India hemp and other intoxicating substances, the act also compromises discipline and negates inmate reformation thrust of the prison.
The statement said, “The Controller-General wishes to appreciate officers and men of the Service including members of the public for providing useful information that has continued to assist the authority in identifying unfit individuals within the ranks for appropriate action.
“The public is once again assured of humane custody of prisoners and sustainable peace and calm in all prison formations across the country as efforts are now being strengthened to guarantee adequate reformation and rehabilitation of offenders to become productive citizens on discharge”