The 1st Annual Conference and General Meeting of the Ummah Care for the Inmates Foundation (UCIF) took place in Alausa, Ikeja, Lagos State, on the 21st December, 2019.
The Conference with the theme “Nigerian Correctional Service: Honouring the Past, Treasuring the Present and Shaping the Future.” drew over 150 participants from UCIF Partners, Muslim Organizations, Government Ministries/Agencies, Tertiary Institutions, Industries, Research Institutes, the press and the general public across the entire Nation.
The conference observations were as follows:
2.1 It was identified that Muslim organisations majorly feed The Muslim inmates during the Month of Ramadan.
2.2 The infrastructure in Nigerian Correctional Centers being grossly inadequate or non-existent constitutes a major hazard (I.e IKOYI Correctional Center Electrocution Mayhem) for Muslim Inmates in Nigeria as a whole.
2.3 Muslim inmates are the least set of individuals who pay lesser attention to the issue of Education in the Correctional facilities.
2.4 MUSLIM organisations hardly pay attention to the plight of Muslim inmates in various Correctional centres across the country.
2.5 Our Various Mosques are redundant and they only believe that Mosques are limited to Spiritual Devotion
2.6 Inconsistencies in Government policies on Prison Reforms, Police Brutality and other encompassing law reforms are major disadvantage for the Correctional Center congestion.
The Conferencerecommends as follows:
3.1 That various Islamic groups and organisations should be involved in the Prison Dawah, so that we can synergize and structurally align the Visitation calendars so as to work for the betterment of the Ummah.
3.2 Also, an umbrella body of Muslim organisations that engage in Daawah activities in the Correctional facilities should have a background details of Inmates and Ex-inmates so that we would know how to interact with them and provide during-Prison and Post-prison evaluation timely.
3.3 It was recommended that after the conference, each Representative (s) of all foundations should come on a round table discussion to address the issue of legal representation for Inmates. This is a core issue which so many organisations hasn’t been found much active.
3.4 We should be able to identify the major causes that lead People to Prison. If it’s addressed, there will be reduction in crime rate and help decongest Prisons.
3.5 Post Prison Empowerment scheme should be well addressed. The Ex- Inmates wouldn’t just go out of Prison without having nothing to do and later return to crime. If properly empowered and monitored, such person wouldn’t have the thought of going back to crime.
3.6 it isn’t a must for any Muslim to join Islamic organisation but it’s important to belong to one or two mosques which we observe solah. The mosques can then serve as a platform where various welfare activities to the Prisons can be well planned and achieved, hence Mosques should open their arms for the Prison DAWAH.
4.0 There should be proper Advocacy, sensitisation and Public Enlightenment for various Mosques and Muslim bodies on the need to see reasons why they should take steps in providing for the needs of Muslim inmates.
4.1. Juvenile centres and Borstal Institution across various states in Nigeria need more attention. The students in these centres hardly being visited even by Muslim organisations who engage in Prison Daawah.
4.2 Various Islamic organisations should endeavour that Nigeria Government take make appropriate laws on Prison Reforms and curb Police Brutality on innocent citizens.
UCIF appreciates the numerous organizations that have made significant contributions to the success of this National Annual debut Conference, for fostering a partnership with her towards developing programmes and projects over the cause of Nigeria Muslim Inmates and the Ummah at large.
UCIF NATIONAL SECRETARIAT
23rd December, 2019.