The attention of the management of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCoS) has been drawn to a publication in one of the National dailies of 4th November, 2021 alleging that inmates are being mobilised to vote to compromise the credibility of the forthcoming governorship election slated for 6th November, 2021 in Anambra State.
The statement credited to one Emma Powerful, the Director of Media and Publicity to the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB), further alleged that inmates have been mobilised from several Correctional centres in the South East to vote in the said election.
In a statement by Controller Corrections Francis Enabore, National Public Relations Officer, NCoS said “This statement is puerile and has no iota of truth in its entirety. It is inane and probably would have been ignored but for the time of the release and diabolical intention, I deemed it necessary to respond and state that there is no such plan to mobilised inmates or any group of persons by the Service to vote in the election or indeed, any election.
” The publication is yet another ignoble act of the IPOB clandestinely designed to create disaffection and chaos among the people.” The statement also said.
The statement further said that It is a known fact that the agency solely responsible for registration of eligible voters and arrangements for logistics to prosecute elections in Nigeria is the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The statement stressed that the Nigerian Correctional Service has no part to play in the process besides providing personnel in the joint security setup to secure polling boots and election materials, including law-abiding citizens before, during and after elections.
It added that the exercise is usually and traditionally carried out outside the precinct of Custodial Centres.
” The immediate concern of the NCoS under the leadership of the Controller General of Corrections, Haliru Nababa is safe custody, care and support for the inmates. This is a worthy course being steadily pursued through the development of programmes that are germane to effective reformation and rehabilitation of inmates to facilitate their seamless reintegration into the society.
” The public and indeed the good and peace-loving people of Anambra State should disregard the false alarm being propagated by IPOB and come out to exercise their franchise come 6th November, 2021 as scheduled by the election umpire, INEC.
” While acknowledging the unfettered support of the media in espousing the positive trajectory of the administration of Nababa in repositioning the NCoS for better service delivery, it is however pertinent to appeal for caution in propagating careless and unpatriotic statements of separatist groups without proper verification.”
The statement pointed out that this appeal is necessary in order to prevent unnecessary pandemonium, mistrust and avoidable tension in the country.