National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) has opened a new branch at the Enugu Prison yard as part of efforts to bring university education closer to the growing number of inmates seeking admission into the university.
Controller of Prisons, Enugu State Command, Mr. Ndubuisi Ogbodo, who disclosed this yesterday, said the university had contributed positively in the training and moulding of character of the prison inmates to enhance their reintegration in the larger society after serving out their terms.
The prison controller described the establishment of a branch of NOUN in the prison yard as part of the ongoing reformation in the sector embarked on by Enugu branch of Nigerian prisons.
He spoke yesterday in his office after being bestowed with a meritorious service award from the ‘Security and Forensic Studies, Nigeria.’
Ogbodo said the organised educational system within Enugu Prison yard had also encouraged the inmates to improve their educational standard, stating that in addition to having produced graduates who passed through NOUN, they had over 80 per cent success among the prison inmates who sat for the NECO exams.
He said: “We are working very hard in giving out the best. The level of reformation that is ongoing at the state prison is high. We now have a branch of NOUN in Enugu State Prison yard, which has produced graduates. We are also training the inmates to improve their educational standard; over 80 per cent of them passed NECO exams last year.”
Ogbodo revealed that the Enugu Prison under his command had also established a musical band known as ‘Enugu Prison’s Band.’
The band, according to him, has produced songs, waiting to be produced in commercial quantity for sales.
He said ordinarily nobody was born a prisoner but prisoners emerged as a result of people’s failure to imbibe positive morals and values from the family, the society and then the government.
But within the prison yard, they work hard to re-inculcate good values and norms among the inmates, and prepare them for reintegration in the larger society.
He added: “We are making the society safe. Nobody is born a prisoner. It is their failure to have imbibed morals and values from their immediate family, the society and the government at large that led to the various wrong attitudes which made them prisoners. My work is to correct those whose character failed the society, so they will not remain the same when they live the prison yard back into the society.”