THE COMMAND STRUCTURE
THE HEADQUARTERS GENERAL STAFF
The Deputy Controllers-General (DCGs) are assisted in the management of these Directorates at the Nigerian Correctional Service Headquarters by a complement of officers from the Assistant Controllers-General of Corrections (ACGs) to Controllers of Corrections right down to the lowest relevant junior staff. Here, the programmes described above are articulated and sent forth for coordinated implementation in the various commands.
THE ZONAL COMMANDS
For the purposes of close monitoring and supervisions, the thirty-six (36) States including the FCT with their corresponding State commands, are grouped into eight (8) zones. Each Zone is made up of a number of State Commands. The Zones are headed by Assistant Controllers-General of Corrections (ACGs) whose responsibilities are to monitor, supervise and direct the performance of Correctional functions in the States under their commands. The Zonal heads also called Zonal Coordinators are responsible to the Controller-General of Corrections in their day to day operations and hold their postings at his pleasure.
THE STATE COMMANDS
All Custodial Centres and Correctional institutions in the States with the exception of the Training Institutions are answerable to the Controllers of Corrections in the States. To that extent the Controllers supervise the custodial centres in the State, catering for the administrative needs of the individual custodial centres including the distribution of stores, the maintenance of discipline, the supervision of works, training, medical welfare, logistics and other support services. In fact the State Controller of Corrections to a lesser extent replicates the administrative structure at the Corrections Headquarters at the State in far more detail than is done at the Zonal Headquarters. The reason is that the general assessment of the performance of the Prison is done at the State level where the custodial centres really are:
The State Controller therefore is assisted by Deputies that correspond more or less to the six broad divisions of the Corrections Headquarters administration except that, in the State this replication is finer in details due largely to the fact that it is in the States that you have the more practical application of Correctional regulations.
THE CUSTODIAL CENTRES
The last and primary unit of administration in the Prisons Service is the prison. It could be a convict prison, a farm centre or a Borstal training institute. At this level, the interaction with the prisoners become more practical and real. Administering the prisons and organizing the daily lives of the inmates becomes a practical reality. All relationship with other Agencies of State in so far as prison administration is concerned begin to bear fruit one way or the other in the prison.
The officer in-charge of the Custodial Centre is therefore assisted by a complement of deputies and assistants corresponding broadly to the administrative divisions at the headquarters level. Here they are dealing daily with inmates, the courts, the general public, the churches and the Non-governmental Agencies and other sundry bodies like the Legal Aids Council, the Ministry of Justice etc. that have one or more things to do with the Custodial centres.
At this level, the workshops become practical realities; inmate training and welfare, feeding and Medicare etc. assume a more realistic dimension since the recipients of these programmes are the inmates who are at the level where they are treated according to rules and regulations.
The administrative structures will therefore vary from one Custodial Centre to the other in a more or less hazy fashion. The Correctional Farm Centers and the smaller custodial centres are bound to be less complex than the Maximum Security Custodial Centres for instance. So will the needs of the Borstal Training Institute vary from the above. But the underlying features of the goal orientation of the Nigerian Correctional Service must be present in all of them.
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