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Prison Rehabilitation Mission International has demanded that all Nigerian correctional facilities offer its prisoners constructive activities.

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The mission statement went on to call the yearly budget allocation and subventions to correctional facilities wasteful, pointing out that the inmates’ productive engagement might turn the jail into a self-supporting operation.

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The request was made at the conference “Rehabilitation, reformation, reintegration, and resettlement panacea for crime reduction in Nigeria” held in Lagos on Saturday by Dr. Silas Falokun, Regional Director of PREMI, North and South America and employee of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice in the United States.

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Falokun stated: “The Mandela mandate outlines the minimal expectations for the treatment of prisoners.” Many of the inmates are eager to work yet are unable to find employment. Because they are idle, a large number of people are deteriorating in health.

In Texas, prisons are businesses. People visit us for a variety of reasons. They don’t just sit there and wait for the government to set aside funds to feed them when they arrive. This is the Nigerian idiosyncrasy. How is it possible to imprison physically fit men and women? You feed them and keep them incarcerated, and when they wake up in the morning, they band together to plot horrible deeds. They idle away the entire day sitting. A idle hand is the work of the devil. These inmates are cunning. They possess intelligence.

The Nigerian government must grant PREMI access to correctional facilities because the country’s correctional centers require assistance. Bishop Kayode Williams, the director general of PREMI, stated that the country’s prison system needed to change to enable inmates to reintegrate into society without turning to crime. “We want to bring our correctional centers to a stage where you have to be productive and not be a liability to the government. We want to partner with the people to make necessary changes in the lives of prisoners so that prisoners won’t be left to suffer in prison,” Williams said.

“I have been working on this since I got out of prison over 40 years ago,” he declared. I’m not doing anything at all. Despite my career as a preacher, my lifelong dedication to mankind is the jail issue. That needs to be contested, in my opinion, and the person doing so ought to have expertise. A ten-year prison sentence is not an easy one to endure. It is a life experience.

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