Effects And Causes Of Prison Break In Nigeria: A Case Study Of Selected Correctional Centers In Nigeria

Project and Seminar Material for Criminology And Security Studies

Effects And Causes Of Prison Break In Nigeria: A Case Study Of Selected Correctional Centers In Nigeria


Violence in one form or the other is not restricted to a section of human communities. Individuals, groups and even nations experience violence of various kinds. The nature of struggle over values, interests, power, ideology and resources of different kinds necessitates the occurrence of violence in human life (Albert, 2000). Prison communities are not far from other human communities that experience violence peculiar to their social environment. Prison break destroys human lives (inmate and prison personnel) and property worth millions of naira in Nigeria. The incessant prison break and jail breaks in Nigeria have created a negative image for the country. However, the lack of adequate research to reveal the causes of prison break and jail breaks in Nigeria has made control difficult and impacted negatively in the relevance of prison in Nigeria. Three major research instruments were used to collect the qualitative data for this study. In-depth interview guide (IDI), Focus group discussion (FGD) and non-participatory observation were used to obtain data for the study. The study was conducted at Agodi prison yard, Ibadan Oyo state Command Secretariat, CP quarters Jericho Ibadan, Oyo Prisons, and Ogbomosho farm centre. Other secondary sources of data include text books, journals and newspapers.

The researcher consulted legal practitioners and non-governmental organizations that operate within the prisons. The data obtained were analyzed using descriptive and content analysis. The study adopted relative deprivation and frustration and aggression theories. The study revealed that high profile inmates spear head violence in Nigeria prison. Government negligence, deteriorating facilities and overcrowding caused inmates to protest. Poor prison management style and corrupt practices by prison officials equally led to prison break. The study concluded that to achieve effective management of the prison and reduce prison break, both the government and the prison management must take their responsibilities seriously. Prison officials must be trained adequately on how to prevent and manage prison break constructively

Table Of Contents

Preliminary Page(s)

  • Title
  • Declaration
  • Approval
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Abstract
  • Table of Content

Chapter One


  • 1.1 Background of the study
  • 1.2 Statement of the general problem
  • 1.3 Aims and objectives of the study
  • 1.4 Research questions
  • 1.5 Research hypothesis
  • 1.6 Significance of the study
  • 1.7 Scope and limitation of the study
  • 1.8 Limitation of the study

Chapter Two

Literature Review

  • 2.1 Introduction
  • 2.2 Prison reform in Nigeria
  • 2.3 History of Nigeria prison
  • 2.4 The practice of imprisonment in the early days
  • 2.5 Cost of imprisonment in Nigeria
  • 2.6 Funding of prisons
  • 2.7 Records on prison congestion in Nigeria
  • 2.8 Poor sanitary and medical factices in Nigerian prison
  • 2.9 Feeding in Nigeria prison
  • 2.10 Rehabilitative and educational programmes in our prisons
  • 2.11 Extant laws on Nigerian prison
  • 2.12 Causes of prison violence and jail breaks
  • 2.13 Theoretical literature
  • 2.14 Theoretical framework

Chapter Three

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research design
  • 3.2 Description of population
  • 3.3 Sampling technique
  • 3.4 Data collection and analysis technique

Chapter Four

Result And Discussion

Chapter Five

Conclusion And Recommendations

  • 5.1 Conclusion
  • 5.2 Recommendation
  • References

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the study

Prisons in Nigeria are a major institution. Inmates locked within the prison walls are segregated from the outside world, kept under constant scrutiny and surveillance, and forced to obey a strict code of oidial rules to avoid facing formal sanctions and consequences. Their personal possessions are taken from them and they must conform to institutional dress and personal appearance norms. Many human functions are thoroughly curtailed – heterosexual activity, friendship, family relationships, society, education, and participation in groups become seriously restricted or to a higher level entirely cut-o [Senna and Siegel, 1981]. It is an institution designed to warehouse people who have been convicted or suspected of crimes. These individuals, known as prisoners or inmates, are kept in continuous custody on a short or long-term basis. Individuals who commit the most serious crimes are sent to prison for one or more years; the more serious the oense, the longer the prison term imposed. For certain crimes, such as murder, oenders may be sentenced to life imprisonment. The major objective of the Nigerian Prisons Service is essentially to hold in custody all those legally interned and accused (Awaiting Trial Persons) while ensuring that all prisoners have access to speedy and fair justice. The Nigerian Prisons Service is also charged with the core responsibility of promoting public protection by providing assistance for oenders in their reformation and rehabilitation under safe, secure and humane conditions, in accordance with universally accepted standards and to facilitate their social reintegration into the society. The Nigerian Prisons Service is supposed to guide and assist the authorities in achieving peaceful and non-riotous situations in the prisons. However, frequent prison breaks in Nigerian prisons have continued to occur. Hence, this trend poses a great research interest, since it is a security threat, not only to the prison authority, but to national security in general. It is then an interesting exercise in trying by way of academic research to unravel the reasons as to why there are incessant prison breaks in Nigeria in recent times.

1.2 Statement of the general problem

The poor infrastructure and lack of adequate care of prison inmates in Nigerian prisons have led to the frequent cases of prison breaks in Nigeria which have posed a lot of security challenges to the country. This has regrettably led to the increase of crime and other vices. The Nigerian prison service have overtime been put the blame but the blame shouldn’t be laid to their feet alone as the Nigerian government should have part of the blame as well. Prison or prison breaks does not augur well for any society let alone Nigeria.

1.3 Aims and objectives of the study

The major aim of the study is to examine the effect and causes of prison break in Nigeria. Other specific objectives of the study is to;

  1. Determine the causes of prison breaks in Nigerian prisons?
  2. Examine the impact prison breaks in Nigerian prisons?
  3. Suggest ways prison break can be managed in Nigerian prisons?

1.4 Research questions

  1. What are the causes of prison breaks in Nigerian prisons?
  2. What is the impact prison breaks in Nigerian prisons?
  3. How can prison break be managed in Nigerian prisons?

1.5 Research hypothesis

H0: Prison breaks have no significant effect on the security of Nigeria.

H1: Prison breaks have significant effect on the security of Nigeria.

1.6 Significance of the study

The study would greatly benefit the Nigerian prison service and by extension the governments at all levels as it would reveal the effect of jail break on the security of Nigeria while highlighting the ways of curbing such. The study would also be of immense benefit to students, researchers and scholars who are interested in developing further studies on the subject matter.

1.7 Scope and limitation of the study

The study is restricted to the effect and causes of prison breaks in Nigeria using the Kujeprisons Abuja as a case study.

1.8 Limitation of the study

Financial constraint:

Insufficient fund tends to impede the efficiency of the researcher in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature or information and in the process of data collection (internet, questionnaire and interview)

Time constraint:

The researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. This consequently will cut down on the time devoted for the research work.

Chapter Five

Conclusion And Recommendations

5.1 Conclusion

As observed from this study, prison break is mostly consequential effects of poor prison management and government neglect. Corruption in the entire criminal justice system takes its toll in the management of prison inmates. It manifests in prison congestion, poor conditions of cells and yard premises, poor health care and nutrition. Apart from these, the prison officials ought to be discipline in their conduct and undergo regular training on conflict management. High profile inmate influence prison officials and inmates negatively.

5.2 Recommendation

From the findings of this study, it is imperative to recommend the following;

  1. The basic and fundamental needs of the inmates should be provided by the government.
  2. Community services and other alternative dispute resurrection methods should be adopted for minor offences so as to reduce overcrowding in Nigerian prisons.
  3. The prison should be seen as one of the important social institutions in the society and therefore adequate funding should be provided for it to run properly.
  4. The training, motivation and discipline of prison inmates should not be ignored if we are to realize the objectives and rationale for having prisons in society.
  5. Militaristic management style should be replaced a more service oriented and humane management style in
    Nigerian prisons.
  6. High profile and political inmates should be monitored so that they will not yield undue negative influence on both officials and inmates in the prison

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