1.1. BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Prisons in Nigeria are a major institution. Inmates locked within the prison walls are segregated from the outside world, kept under constant scrutiny and surveillance, and forced to obey a strict code of official rules to avoid facing formal sanctions and consequences. Their personal possessions are taken from them and they must conform to institutional dress and personal appearance norms. Many human functions are thoroughly curtailed – heterosexual activity, friendship, family relationships, society, education, and participation in groups become seriously restricted or to a higher level entirely cut-off [Senna and Siegel, 1981]. It is an institution designed to warehouse people who have been convicted or suspected of crimes. These individuals, known as prisoners or inmates, are kept in continuous custody on a short or long-term basis. Individuals who commit the most serious crimes are sent to prison for one or more years; the more serious the offense, the longer the prison term imposed. For certain crimes, such as murder, offenders may be sentenced to life imprisonment.
The major objective of the Nigerian Prisons Service is essentially to hold in custody all those legally interned and accused (Awaiting Trial Persons) while ensuring that all prisoners have access to speedy and fair justice. The Nigerian Prisons Service is also charged with the core responsibility of promoting public protection by providing assistance for offenders in their reformation and rehabilitation under safe, secure and humane conditions, in accordance with universally accepted standards and to facilitate their social reintegration into the society.
The Nigerian Prisons Service is supposed to guide and assist the authorities in achieving peaceful and non-riotous situations in the prisons. However, frequent prison breaks in Nigerian prisons have continued to occur. Hence, this trend poses a great research interest, since it is a security threat, not only to the prison authority, but to national security in general. It is then an interesting exercise in trying by way of academic research to unravel the reasons as to why there are incessant prison breaks in Nigeria in recent times.
1.2. STATEMENT OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM
The poor infrastructure and lack of adequate care of prison inmates in Nigerian prisons have led to the frequent cases of jail breaks in Nigeria which have posed a lot of security challenges to the country. This has regrettably led to the increase of crime and other vices. The Nigerian prison service have overtime been put the blame but the blame shouldn’t be laid to their feet alone as the Nigerian government should have part of the blame as well. Prison or jail breaks does not augur well for any society let alone Nigeria.
1.3. AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The major aim of the study is to examine the effect and causes of prison break in Nigeria. Other specific objectives of the study include;
1. To examine the level of infrastructure in Nigerian prisons.
2. To examine the causes of jail breaks in Nigerian prisons
3. To determine the level of care of prison inmates in Nigerian prisons.
4. To determine the effect of prison break on the security situation of Nigeria.
5. To examine the need to effectively guard the Nigerian prisons.
6. To recommend ways of minimizing prison breaks in Nigerian prisons.
1.4. RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. What is the level of infrastructure in Nigerian prisons?
2. What are the causes of jail breaks in Nigerian prisons?
3. What is the level of care of prison inmates in Nigerian prisons?
4. What is the effect of prison break on the security situation of Nigeria?
5. Is there a need to effectively guard the Nigerian prisons?
6. What are the ways of minimizing prison breaks in Nigerian prisons?
1.5. RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H0: Prison breaks have no significant effect on the security of Nigeria.
H1: Prison breaks have significant effect on the security of Nigeria.
1.6. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
The study would greatly benefit the Nigerian prison service and by extension the governments at all levels as it would reveal the effect of jail break on the security of Nigeria while highlighting the ways of curbing such. The study would also be of immense benefit to students, researchers and scholars who are interested in developing further studies on the subject matter.
1.7. SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
The study is restricted to the effect and causes of prison breaks in Nigeria using the kuje prisons Abuja as a case study.
LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
Financial constraint: Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview)
Time constraint: The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.
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