The federal government has inaugurated the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) command and control room to forestall jail attacks and real time monitoring of selected custodial centres across the country.
Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, inaugurated the ICT infrastructure on Monday in Abuja.
Mr Aregbesola, who also inaugurated a block of barracks for junior officers and 40 operational vehicles, rewarded 25 personnel of a Kagara custodial facility in Niger state, where the personnel repelled an invasion by bandits.
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The minister said activities at selected custodial centres would now be monitored real time from the Service’s headquarters in Abuja to guard against abuses of inmates rights and ensure adequate security surveillance.
“Inmates can be monitored without any violation of their rights. With this, jailbreaks and riots can be avoided or nipped in the bud,” he said.
Mr Aregbesola advised highly placed individuals against seeking his help to facilitate the release of inmates, saying he had no powers to do so.
According to him, I cannot order the release of anyone. Some people call me and say I should help them release some inmates. I cannot do that.
“We are custodians. We cannot take people into custody and we cannot also release those in custody except we have the authority of those who sent them to us,” he said.
Earlier, the Controller General, NCoS, Haliru Nababa, said it was gratifying to note that the service under the present administration had witnessed unprecedented improvement.
This, he said, was due to the kind of attention the service had continued to receive from the government.
“Thus, the service has enjoyed generous increase in budgetary allocation over the last few years, enabling salient interventions, improvement and landmark achievements.
“All these projects are pivotal to the actualisation of NCoS core mandates therefore, there is no doubt whatsoever that the service will experience significant progress in service-delivery,” the controller general said.
Mr Nababa appreciated the legislators and other stakeholders for their continuous support, adding that the service would not rest on its oars in its resolve to deliver on its mandate and compete with its contemporaries across the globe.