1 [SHB. ] NIGERIAN PRISONS SERVICE COMMISSION (ESTABLISHMENT, ETC.) BILL, 00 C Arrangement of Sections Section: Part I Establishment, Composition, etc. of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission. Establishment of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission.. Composition of the Prisons Commission.. Tenure of office.. Independence and autonomy of the Prisons Commission.. Removal of a member and cessation of membership.. Proceedings of the Prisons Commission and quorum. Part II Functions and Powers of the Prisons Commission. Functions and power.. Power of delegation and restrictions thereof. Part III Organisation and Staff of the Commission. Appointment and duties of the Secretary of the Prisons Commission.. Special provisions as regards secondment. Part IV Financial Provisions. Funds and expenditure of the Prisons Commission.. Borrowing power.. Annual report. Part V Legal Proceedings and Miscellaneous Provisions. Legal proceedings, service of documents, etc.. Regulations, etc.. Consequential amendments, repeals and transitional provisions.. Interpretations, etc.. Provisions of this Act severable. 0. Citation.
3 C A BILL FOR An Act to Establish the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission for the Purposes of Reforming the Administrative and Organisational Structure and Methods of the Nigerian Prisons Service, Enhancing its Efficiency and Effectiveness in the Performance of its Duties, Reworking Prison Houses and Improving the General Welfare and Conditions of Service of the Officers and Staff Thereof, and Provide for Other Matters Incidental or Supplemental Thereto 0 Sponsored by Senator Abubakar Danso Sodangi (Nasarawa West) [ ] Be it Enacted by the National Assembly of the Federal Republic of Nigeria as follows Part I Establishment, Composition, etc. of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission. () There is hereby established a body to be known as the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission (in this Act referred to as the Commission or the Prisons Commission ) which shall under that name be a body corporate with perpetual succession and a common seal and may sue or be sued in its corporate name. () The Prison Commission established pursuant to subsection () of this section shall have its principal office in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja and liaison offices in the operational districts or divisions of the Prisons Services.. () The Prisons Commission shall Comprise (a) a Chairman (not employed in the Civil Service) who shall (i) be a person of proven integrity, ability and character with such academic qualifications and working experience as are necessary to perform the functions of this office under this Act, (ii) be appointed by this President, subject to confirmation by the Senate; (b) six other members (not employed in the Civil Service), two of whom Commencement. Establishment of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission. Composition of the Prisons Commission. Tenure of office.
4 C 00 No. Independence and 0 0 shall be women, who shall (i) be fit and proper persons with considerable experience in private or public sector, and who by their professional qualifications are credible Nigerians, (ii) be appointed by the President, subject to confirmation by the Senate; (c) the Controller General of the Prison Services; (d) one person each to represent the following Ministries, that is (i) Internal Affairs, (ii) Finance, (iii) Justice, (iv) Information; (e) one person to represent the Nigerian Human Rights Commission; (f ) one person to represent non government organizations in the Federation involved in the reform and welfare of Prisoners; and (g) one person to represent the Nigerian Police Force, who shall not be below the rank of a Police Commissioner,. () The members appointed pursuant to subsection () (b) of this section shall include not less than two persons who shall be retired officers of the Prisons Service, not below the rank of Assistant Controller upon their retirement. () The membership of the Prisons Commission shall at all times reflect the federal character of Nigeria.. () Subject to the provisions of section of this Act, a member of the Prison Commission, other than an ex - officio member (a) shall hold office for a period of four years in the first instance and shall be eligible for reappointment for a further period of four years, and no more; (b) may resign his appointment by writing under his hand a letter addressed to the President, and his membership shall terminate on the date of receipt of the letter of resignation; and (c) shall be paid such remuneration and allowances as the Revenue
5 0 0 Mobilization, Allocation and Fiscal Commission may, from time to time, determine. () A member of the Prisons Commission, other than an ex officio member, shall not while holding office hold any other office of emolument.. In exercising its powers to make appointment or exercise disciplinary control over persons employed in its service, the Prisons Commission shall not be subject to the direction or control of any other authority or persons.. () The Chairman or any Member of the Prisons Commission, other than an ex - officio Member, may only be removed by the President acting upon an address supported by two thirds majority of the Senate praying that he be so removed for inability to discharge the functions of his office (whether arising from infirmity of mind or body or any other cause) or for misconduct. () Without prejudice to subsection () if this section (a) any member who is absent from three consecutive ordinary meetings of the Prisons Commission shall file an explanation to the Chairman for consideration by the other members, and if the explanation is not Accepted by the members of the Prisons Commission; or (b) where the Members of the Prisons Commission are satisfied that the continued presence in the Prisons Commission of any member is not in the interest of the overall objective and functions of the Prisons Commission under this Act, then the Chairman of the Prisons Commission may recommend accordingly to the President that the member be removed and declare the office of that member vacant. () Any vacancy in the Prisons Commission occurring as a result of the happening of the circumstances described under this section of this Act shall be filled by appointing a person who shall represent the same interest which his predecessor represented, and shall hold office for the unexpired term of office of the last holder of the office.. () At any meeting of the Prisons Commission, the Chairman shall autonomy of the Prisons Commission. Removal of a member and cessation of membership. Proceedings of the Prisons Commission and quorum. Functions and
6 powers. Cap. P LFN. 0 0 preside and in his absence, such member of the Prisons Commission as the other members may elect from their number for that purpose, shall preside. () The quorum at a meeting of the Prisons Commission shall consist of the Chairman or in an appropriate case, the person presiding at the meeting pursuant to subsection () of this section, and five other members. () The Prisons Commission shall have power to regulate its proceedings and may make standing rules for that purpose and subject to such standing rules and subsection () of this section, may function not withstanding any vacancy in its membership or the absence of any member. () Subject to its standing rules, the Prisons Commission may set up such number of standing committees as it thinks fit to carry out, on behalf of the Prisons Commission, such of its functions as it may determine, but no decision of any such committee shall have effect unless confirmed by the Prisons Commission. () The Prisons Commission may co opt persons who are not members of the Commission to any of its meetings or that of a committee thereof, and such persons may take part in the deliberations of the Prisons Commission or any committee thereof but shall not be entitled to vote thereat. Part II Functions and Powers of the Prisons Commission. () Subject to this Act, the functions and powers of Prisons Commission shall be to (a) carry on the reformation of the administrative and organizational structure and methods of the Prisons Service for the purposes of enhancing its efficiency and effectiveness in the performance and discharge of its statutory functions and duties; (b) carry on the expansion, renovation and modernization of existing prison houses and their maintenance, and where necessary and expedient construct new prison houses to conform with acknowledged international standards; (c) issue directions, rules and regulations to the Prisons Service on matters relating to correctional and administrative procedures and methods for the reintroduction and reinvigoration of the conduct and practice of
7 0 0 (i) parole for certain category of ex convicts, (ii) suspended sentences for certain category of convicts, (iii) community service by certain category of prisoners, (iv) after care services and half way home procedures for persons released from prison houses after serving long prison sentences, (v) prison labour for persons convicted with hard labour; (d) recommend to the President from among the list of eligible officers of the Prisons Service on the appointment of the Controller General of the Prisons Service; (e) appoint persons to hold or act in all the offices of the Prisons Service including power to make appointments on the promotion and conversion of the officers and staff, and to confirm appointments; (f) recommend to the President the removal from office of the officers of the Prisons Service specified in paragraphs (d) and (e) of this subsection, and to exercise disciplinary control over such officers; (g) collect, control and disburse all moneys, capital and recurrent, for the Prisons Service; (h) make recommendations to the Federal Executive Council for improving and upgrading the general welfare packages and conditions of service of the officers and staff of the Prisons Service; (i) appoint, dismiss and exercise disciplinary control over members and staff of the Commission and the Prisons Service, in accordance with any law in relation thereto; (j) advise the President or the Federal Executive Council on any matter pertaining to the Prisons Service as may be referred to the Prisons Commission by the President or the Federal Executive Council; (k) deal with all other matters relating to broad issues of policy and administration of the Prisons Service after due consultation with the Minister; and (l) generally carry out such other activities and duties which are incidental or supplemental to any other matter under this Act which are expedient to the full discharge of its functions under this Act. Power of delegation and
8 restrictions thereof. Appointment and duties of the Secretary of the Prisons Commission. Special provisions 0 0 () Notwithstanding the foregoing functions of the Prisons Commission with respect to the Prisons Service, the Director referred to in the Prisons Act shall continue to discharge the functions specified in relation to his office, an shall, from the commencement of this Act, be statutorily known as the Controller General of the Prisons Service. () For the avoidance of any doubt, a person recommended from the list of eligible persons for appointment to the post of Controller General of the Prisons Service shall be a serving member of the Prisons Service, not below the rank of a Deputy Controller General. () The Prisons Commission shall have power to acquire, hold or dispose of movable and immovable properties of the Prisons Commission after due consultations shall have been made with the Minister.. () The Prisons Commission may, subject to such conditions as it may think fit, delegate any of its powers under this Act to (a) the Controller General with respect to (i) the appointment of persons to such offices in the Prisons Service as shall be specified by the Prisons Commission, (ii) the exercise of disciplinary control over persons holding any office in the Prisons Service; (b) any of is members; and (c) to a committee consisting of such persons (one of whom shall be named Chairman) as may be prescribed by the Prisons Commission. () Notwithstanding subsection () of this section, or any other provision of this Act, the Prisons Commission shall not delegate any of its powers aforesaid in respect of offices of the Controller General and the Deputy Controller General, and such other staff not below grade level 0. Part III Organisation and Staff of the Commission. () The Prisons Commission shall appoint a Secretary to the Commission who shall have such qualification and experience as the Commission may prescribed, and who shall have the following responsibilities, that is (a) keep the records, and conduct the correspondence of the Prisons
9 0 0 Commission; (b) issue notices of meetings of the Prisons Commission and prepare the minutes of the meetings thereof, as may be directed by the Chairman or the Commission; (c) be the head of the secretariat of the Prisons Commission, and be responsible for the administration thereof, and the direction and control of other employees of the Commission, subject to the direction of the Chairman; and (d) perform such other duties as the Prisons Commission or the Chairman may, from time to time, direct. () The Secretary appointed pursuant to subsection () of this section shall be paid such salaries and remuneration as may be specified in his letter of appointment.. () The Government of the Federation or a State may, on an application made to it by the Prisons Commission second certain category of officers in the Public Service of the Federation or, as the case may be, of a State to assist the Commission in the discharge of its functions under this Act. () The Prisons Commission may, if it deems it necessary to do so appoint persons not in the public service of the Federation or of a State to perform such duties as the Commission may direct. Part IV Financial Provisions. () The Prisons Commission shall establish a fund into which shall be credited the following sums of money, that is (a) such sums as may be allocated by the Government of the Federation for the running expenses of the Prisons Commission and all other assets from time to time accruing to the Commission; (b) such sums as may from time to time be lent to the Prisons Commission; and (c) such sums as may be collected or received by the Prisons Commission from other sources either in the execution of its functions or in respect of any property vested in the Commission or otherwise howsoever. as regards secondment. Funds and Expenditure of the Prisons Commission. Borrowing power.
10 Annual estimates, accounts and audit. Annual report. Legal proceedings, 0 0 () The Prisons Commission may from time to time apply the proceeds of the fund established in pursuance of subsection () of this section (a) to the cost of administration of the Commission; (b) to the payment of salaries and allowances of members of the Prisons Commission, and reimbursement of members or any committee set up by the Commission for such expenses as may be expressly authorised by the Commission in accordance with the rates approved by the Revenue Mobilisation, Allocation and Fiscal Commission; (c) to the payment of salaries, fees or other remuneration or allowances of the staff of the Prisons Commission; (d) for the maintenance of any property acquired or vested in the Prisons Commission; and (e) for and in connection with all or any of the functions of the Prisons Commission contemplated under this Act.. () The Prisons Commission may, with the consent of its members or in accordance with the general guidelines or authority given by the Government of the Federation, borrow by way of loan or overdraft from any source, any moneys required by the Commission to meets its obligations and its functions under this Act, so however, that such consent or authority shall be required where the sum or aggregate of the sums involved at any time does not exceed such amount as is for the time being specified in relation to the Prisons Commission by the Government of the Federation. () The Prisons Commission may, subject to the provisions of this Act and conditions of trust in respect of funds held or any property owned, invest any but not all of the funds with the same consent or general authority.. () The Chairman of the Prisons Commission shall cause to be prepared, not later than six months before the end of the year, estimates of recurrent and capital expenditure and income of the Commission during the next succeeding financial year, which shall be acceded to by the Commission and presented to the President through the Minister, for approval by the National Assembly.
11 0 0 () The Prisons Commission shall keep proper accounts and proper records in relation thereto and shall prepare in respect of each financial year a statement of accounts in such form as the Minister may direct. () The Prisons Commission shall as soon as may be after the end of the financial year to which the accounts relate cause the accounts to be audited by qualified auditors appointed from the list of auditors and in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the Auditor General of the Federation. () The auditors shall on completion of the audit of the accounts of the Prisons Commission for each financial year, prepare and submit to the Commission the following reports, that is to say (a) a general report setting out the observations and recommendations of the auditors on the financial affairs of the Prisons Commission generally for that year and on any important matters which the auditors may consider necessary to bring to the notice of the Commission; and (b) a detailed report containing the observations and recommendations of the auditors on all aspects of the operations of the Commission for that year.. The Prisons Commission shall prepare and submit to the President and the National Assembly, through the Minister, not later than the end of June in each financial year, a report in such form as he may direct on the activities of the Prisons Commission during the immediately preceding financial year, and shall include in such report a copy of the audited accounts of the Commission for that year and the auditors report thereon. Part V Legal Proceedings and Miscellaneous Provisions. () Subject to the provisions of this Act, no suit against the Prisons Commission, and no suit against any member, officer or servant of the Commission shall lie or be instituted, in any court unless it is commenced within twelve months following the act, neglect or default complained of, or, in the case of a continuance of damages or injury, within twelve months following the cessation thereof. () No suit shall be commenced against the Prisons Commission or against any member, officer or servant of the Commission until one month at service of documents, etc. Regulations, etc. Consequential
12 amendments, repeals and transitional 0 0 least after there has been served on the Prisons Commission by or on written notice of intention to commence the suit stating (a) the cause of action; (b) the particulars of the claims; and (c) the name and place of abode of the intending plaintiff and the relief claimed. () The notice referred to in subsection () of this section and any summons, notice or other document required or authorised to be served on the Prisons Commission may, except where there is express provisions to the contrary, be served (a) by delivering it to the Chairman or the Secretary; or (b) by sending it through registered post addressed to the Secretary in the principal office of the Prisons Commission. () In any suit, any member, officer or servant of the Prisons Commission who is duly authorised in writing by the Commission may represent the Prisons Commission without prejudice to any other right of representation, at any stage of the proceedings. () In any suit against the Prisons Commission, no execution or attachment or process in the nature thereof shall be issued against the Commission, but any sums of money which may by the judgment of the court be awarded against the Prisons Commission (subject to the directions given by the court where notice of appeal has been given by the Commission in respect of the judgment) be paid by the Commission from its funds.. () Subject to the provisions of this Act and the approval of the Minister, the Prisons Commission may make regulations relating generally to the conditions of service, including power to determine the salaries and allowances of the officers of the Prisons Service and its servants and, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, such regulations may provide for (a) the composition of membership of any committee set up by the Commission under this Act;
13 0 0 (b) the appointment, promotion and disciplinary control (including dismissal) of any officer or staff of the Prisons Service or the Commission; (c) appeals by any such officer or staff against dismissal or other disciplinary measures; (d) grants for purposes conducive to the welfare of persons employed in the Prisons Service or by the Commission; (e) the establishment and maintenance of medical funds, superannuation funds and provident funds and the contributions payable thereto and the benefits derivable therefrom, and until such regulations are made, any instrument relating to the conditions of service of persons in the service of the Government of the Federation shall, with such modifications as may be necessary, be applicable to the officers and staff of the Prisons Service or the Commission. () Any regulations made pursuant to subsection () of this section need not be published in the Federal Government Gazette but the Prisons Commission shall cause them to be brought before the notice of all persons concerned in such manner as it may, from time to time, determine.. () As from the commencement of this Act, the incorporation of the Nigerian Prisons Service (in this Act referred to as the Prisons Service ) in the Board established by section of the Immigration and Prisons Services Board Act (as amended) shall stand repealed, and any reference to the Prisons Service in the said Act shall be construed as a reference to the Prisons Service which is, by this Act, placed under the direction and control of the Prisons Commission established under section of this Act. () Accordingly, (a) the powers previously vested in the President and the Federal Civil Service Commission in sections and of the Prisons Act and which powers is vested on the Immigrations and Prisons Board Act (as amended) are hereby removed from the said Board and conferred on the Prisons Commission established under this Act; (b) the membership of the Director of the Prisons Service in the said Board (described under subsection () of this section) is hereby terminated by provisions. Cap. I LFN. Interpretation, etc. Cap. P LFN.
14 Provisions of this Act severable. 0 0 this Act; and (c) all other powers exercised by the said Board ad the Federal Civil Service Commission, and all other powers exercised by the Minister in the said Act or in the Prisons Act or any other Act, with respect to the Prisons Service or the Director thereof (in this Act, referred to as the Controller General), are hereby removed from the aforementioned bodies, authorities or persons, and vested in the Prisons Commission established under this Act. () Any person who, immediately before the coming into force of this Act, is the holder of any office in the Prisons Service shall, on the commencement of this Act, continue in that office and shall be deemed to have been appointed to the office by the Prisons Commission established under this Act.. () In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires, the following words and expressions have meanings respectively assigned to them, that is after care service refers to efforts aimed at the rehabilitation of a prisoner upon his discharge from a prison house; Chairman means the Chairman of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission appointed pursuant to section () (a) of this Act; Commission or Prisons Commission means the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission established pursuant to section () of this Act; community service refers to a non custodial penalty requiring certain category of offenders to work unpaid for a specified number of hours; Federation means the Federal Republic of Nigeria; function includes power and duty; half way home refers to a transit home where a released prisoner is allowed to stay for a short while to enable him adjust to the environment of freedom before joining the free society; member means any member of the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission appointed pursuant to section of this Act, and includes the Chairman; Minister means the Minister for the time being charged with responsibility on matters relating to internal affairs and Ministry shall be construed,
15 accordingly; officer means any person employed in the Prisons Service, or a person who is for the time being performing duties in relation to the Prisons Service; parole means a system of early release of a convict from prison, and placed under supervision by a probation officer; President means the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria; and Prisons Service means the Nigerian Prisons Service classified as such under section () to the Prisons Act. () The Interpretation Act shall apply for the purposes of interpreting the provisions of this Act.. If any provision of this Act or the application thereof to any person, body corporate or circumstances is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of this Act which can be given effect without that invalid provision or application and to this end, the provisions of this Act are severable. 0. This Act may be cited as the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission (Establishment, etc.) Bill, 00. Citation. Explanatory Memorandum This Bill seeks to establish the Nigerian Prisons Service Commission with a view to reforming the administrative and organizational structure and methods of the Nigerian Prisons Service, enhancing its efficiency and effectiveness in the performance of its duties under the Prisons Act, reworking and modernizing prison houses, improving the general welfare and conditions