The federal government has said that sentencing guidelines would be produced and issued for the implementation of non-custodial measures in line with the provisions of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act, 2015 and Nigerian Correctional Service Act, 2019.
The Solicitor General of the Federation and Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Justice, Dayo Apata (SAN), made this known in his keynote address at a two-day retreat on Correctional Service Reform in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State, on March 17.
Apata, who represented the Attorney General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami (SAN), said under the guidelines, correctional service inmates would be made to undergo counselling and skills acquisition. He added that the Implementation Framework will mainstream the roles of critical stakeholders for their consideration and implementation.
According to the Deputy Director of Information in the Ministry of Justice, Modupe Ogundoro, Apata said the retreat will produce draft FCT non-custodial sentencing practice directions especially in the FCT and enable all courts in the FCT to award non-custodial sentences in line with the ACJA 2015.
On the part of the state government, Governor Udom promised to look into the Correctional Service Reform to support the Federal Government, especially in providing training for the inmates at the State Skills Acquisition Centers. He believes this will help reshape the character of the inmates.
Earlier, the Chairman, Presidential Committee on Correctional Service Reform and Decongestion, who doubles as the Chief Judge of Federal Capital Territory High Court, Justice Ishaq Bello, welcomed stakeholders and participants to the retreat. He said the purpose of the retreat was to look into certain innovations which came up in the course of the execution of the mandate as Presidential Committee to reform and decongest correctional centres especially the issue of non-custodial sentencing.