Nigerian Prisons Face Backlash as Dogs Enjoy Better Meals Than Inmates

In a startling revelation, the Nigerian Correctional Service (NCS) has acknowledged that the daily food budget for dogs guarding prisons surpasses that allocated for feeding inmates. 

Controller General Haliru Nababa disclosed during a National Assembly hearing that each dog receives N800 per day, while inmates get a meager N750.

Nababa emphasized that despite requesting a review to increase the inmate’s daily meal allowance to N3,000, pending approval, the current allocation remains grossly insufficient.

With a national inmate count of 81,354 in 2023, including 53,352 awaiting trial, concerns were raised by the joint committee about the adequacy of the funds for feeding these individuals.

Committee Chairman Adams Oshiomhole expressed disbelief at the meager allocation, asserting that innocent individuals awaiting trial, a substantial portion of the inmate population, were being underfed.

 He criticized the dehumanizing conditions in correctional facilities and questioned why the 2024 budget relied on outdated figures.

As the committee pressed for a breakdown of the inmate menu and the cost of foodstuff, Oshiomhole raised eyebrows, questioning the complexity of a menu that required reading a book for explanation. 

He underscored the importance of the correctional system focusing on rehabilitation rather than dehumanization.

Oshiomhole’s stern remarks highlighted the stark reality that unconvicted Nigerians were being fed on a lower budget than the dogs guarding the prisons. 

The committee deemed this a critical policy issue, raising questions about government priorities in allocating more funds for animal welfare than for the well-being of individuals in custody.

The NCS now faces public scrutiny as Nigerians demand a reevaluation of prison budgets to prioritize the humane treatment and adequate feeding of inmates over spending on canine security.

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