…Changes FUA Makurdi to J.S. Tarka University
By Lawrence Olaoye
The federal government has okayed an Act seeking to rename the Nigeria Prisons Service, Nigerian Correctional Service.
Senior Special Assistant (SSA) to the President on National Assembly Matters (Senate), Senator Eta Enang, told State House Correspondents yesterday that President Muhammari had signed into law an Act repealing the Prisons Acts by changing Nigeria Prisons Service to Nigerian Correctional Service, also known as “the Correctional Service.”
The President also approved the change of the Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Benue state to Joseph Sarwuan Tarka University, University.
The Presidential National Assembly liaison officer explained that the new Act consists of two main faculties of the Correctional Service namely: Custodial Service and Non-custodial Service
He said the custodial service will take custody and control of persons legally interned in safe, secure and humane conditions.
Other functions of the custodial service include: Conveying remand persons to and from courts in motorized formations. Identifying the existence and causes of anti-social behaviours of inmates .
“Conducting risk and needs assessment aimed at developing appropriate correctional treatment methods for reformation, rehabilitation and reintegration;
Others are “ Implementing reformation and rehabilitation programmes to enhance the reintegration of inmates back into the society .
“Initiating behavior modification in inmates through the provision of medical, psychological, spiritual and counseling services for all offenders including violent extremists .
“Empowering inmates through the deployment of educational and vocational skills training programmes, and facilitating incentives and income generation through Custodial Centres, farms and industries
“ Administering borstal and related institutions; Providing support to facilitate the speedy disposal of cases of persons awaiting trial; and It further provides in Section 12 (2) .
“That where an inmate sentenced to death has exhausted all legal procedures for appeal and a period of 10 years has elapsed without execution of the sentence, the Chief Judge may commute the sentence of death to life imprisonment. And Section 12 (8) empowers the state Controller of the Service to reject more intakes of inmates where it is apparent that the correctional centre in question is filled to capacity.
He explained further that the non-custodial faculty of the correctional service will be responsible for the administration of non-custodial measures, namely: Community Service, probation, parole, restorative justice measures and such other measures as a court of competent jurisdiction may order.
“Restorative Justice measure approved in the Act include victim-offender mediation, family group conferencing, community mediation and other conciliatory measures as may be deemed necessary pre-trial, trial during imprisonment or even post- imprisonment stages.
He also disclosed that the president signed the Federal Universities of Agriculture (Amendment No.2) Act, 2019.
“This Act amends the Federal Universities of Agriculture Act, Cap. F22, Law of the Federation of Nigeria to change the name of the Federal University of Agriculture Makurdi in Benue State to Joseph Sarwuan Tarka University, Makurdi,” he said.
Asked whether the newly endorsed bills by the President have not elapsed considering the constitutional provisions that the President can only assent to bills within 30 days after having been passed by the National Assembly, Enang explained