Nigerian Prisons Service (NPS) says it is partnering with the Institute of Chartered Mediation and Conciliations (ICMC) to increase awareness on mediation as a means of resolving conflicts.
Mr Ja’afaru Ahmed, the Controller-General Prisons, announced this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Tuesday in Abuja, noting that the partnership would reduce number of prisoners.
He observed that the decision of the NPS to collaborate with the ICMC was informed by a concern about the rising cases of conflicts that resulted in prosecution which ought to have been settled through mediation.
“Mediation is important. Settling dispute among people enables the community have the energy to stay peaceful.
“We have barracks and live in the barracks. Barracks constitutes diverse people from different part of the country and there are bound to be conflicts within the barracks.
“Our work is to reform, rehabilitate and reintegrate the prisoners to the society; we believe this can be achieved by making mediation skills a course for our prisons officers,’’ he said.
Ja’afaru said that the skills would ensure that households possessed mediation skills to make home front peaceful and guarantee that conflicts could be settled easily.
“More than 68 per cent persons are awaiting trials persons and a lot of them committed offences that could be have been settled by mediation.
“You find people who are not supposed to be in prison for a fight or on money issues within a family that could have been settled among themselves.
“These are some of the issues the NPS intend to solve as part of supporting President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in ensuring the rehabilitation of the service,’’ he said.(NAN)