Prisoners in Nigeria are well fed when compared to corps members. This is according to Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim, the Director-General of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
During his appearance before the House Committee on Youth Development for budget defence, Ibrahim revealed that each prisoner in the country has a daily budget of N1,000 for his or her feeding.
But for corps members, according to Ibrahim, they only get N650 per person for feeding on a daily basis.
It would be recalled that the Senate Committee on Interior, on October 27, 2021, increased the daily feeding allowance of the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS) from its current N450 per person to a minimum of N1,000 per day.
Officials of the NCS were in the Senate to defend the 2022 budget of the Service, where they proposed an increment of the daily feeding allowance to N750.
Luckily for them, the committee, however, described the amount as grossly inadequate and increased it in line with the current economic realities, pledging to undertake an upward review of inmates’ feeding cost from N450 to N1000 per day.
Defending why the federal government should consider increasing the current feeding allowance of corps members, Ibrahim said it’s not a fair situation for prisoners to be earning than them.
His words: “The only thing that I will tell you here is that sometimes last year, I promised the committee at the NYSC, we are putting on our thinking cap, that I don’t want us to always go cap in hand begging for funds so that, at least, we should do something to bring revenue to the table. This I did last year and we generated over N280m which we paid into the Federation Account.
“Our challenge is in the area of feeding. The budgetary approval for feeding per corps member is N650, which is grossly inadequate. By the time you divide it by three meals (per day), that is N216 per meal. So, we are appealing to this committee to please help us out.
“Even recently, at the Ministry of Interior, the feeding of prisoners was increased to N1,000. So, if we can feed criminals with N1,000, our graduates are putting their lives in the service of our country…I pray that this committee should please do something about it.”