…By Lola Smith for TDPel Media.
Officers of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS), formerly known as the Nigerian Prisons Service, have expressed dissatisfaction with the poor welfare conditions they face.
In a letter addressed to President Bola Tinubu, an official of the service highlighted issues of corruption and inadequate remuneration within the organization.
Reports indicate that some officials rely on inmates within the prisons for their survival due to low salaries.
Allegations of Poor Remuneration and Mistreatment
According to an anonymous official, NCS personnel are subjected to meager salaries and mistreatment, unlike their counterparts in other departments of the Ministry of Interior.
The official stated that junior staff salaries range from N38,000 to N65,000 for grade levels 3 to 7 respectively.
Despite working for 11 years and reaching level 7, the official expressed that a monthly salary of N65,000 is insufficient to meet basic needs such as rent, food, school fees, and other bills.
The official further revealed that promotion arrears are not being paid.
Challenges Faced by Officers
The letter also highlighted the non-issuance of uniforms to NCS personnel, leaving them to purchase their own uniforms.
Additionally, the official disclosed that officers often resort to begging inmates for money when their salaries are exhausted, leading to an unprofessional relationship that compromises security.
The lack of adequate pay has forced some officers to depend on inmates for survival, which poses risks and undermines their professional duties.
Disparity in Salary Structures and Plea for Harmonization
The official compared the salary structure between the NCS and the police force, citing a significant disparity.
While the last person in the police force receives N74,000, the last person in the correctional service earns N38,000.
The official called for the harmonization of salary structures, highlighting the temptation created by the vast difference in pay between an inspector in the police force earning N180,000 and an inspector in the correctional service earning only N65,000.
The letter emphasized the urgent need for improved living standards and increased pay to enable NCS personnel to effectively carry out their duties.
A Call for Government Intervention
In conclusion, the official pleaded with the government to address the grievances and improve the welfare conditions of NCS officers.
The officers highlighted the challenges they face and their dependence on inmates for survival.
They appealed for the government to consider aligning their salary structure with that of the police force and to provide better working conditions, emphasizing that the ability to discharge their duties effectively relies on improved standards of living.Share on Facebook «||» Share on Twitter «||» Share on Reddit «||» Share on LinkedIn