NCS Personnel Threaten Showdown Over Selective Payment Of Election Duty Allowance

Personnel of the Nigeria Correctional Services(NCS) are gearing up for a showdown with authorities of the service over the selective payment of election duty allowances.

They said authorities of the NCS have paid deaf ears to their plight and have gone ahead to pay the election duty allowances to selected personnel at the NCS Headquarters.

Some of them who spoke to our correspondent on condition of anonymity said they were all actively involved in the election duty but the NCS authorities have blatantly refused to pay them.

They said the development may trigger a major unrest in NCS formations across the country as personnel are mulling the idea of staging a peaceful protest to drive home their demands.

One of them said, ‘’Just like in 2019 general elections, the NCS authorities have selected only the headquarter staff and paid the allowances meanwhile other sister agencies paid every staff, whether you are involved in election duty or not.

‘’ This is not just unfortunate but pathetic. It is unacceptable to us that only those at the headquarters were paid even when we were all actively involved in the election duties.

Another personnel said, ‘’ The laws of our country grants us the legitimate right to protest. If we are not paid, we will consider the option of staging a protest. 
‘’ There is tension right now in prison formations. Even the inmates are not happy over the inhuman treatment on us.

There are obvious lamentations and disquiet from officers working in the yards and this has weakened our morale’’
In the same vein, another senior officer added, ‘’ I was on annual leave and had to be recalled from leave to assist in beefing up security in the prison due to the general elections. Am I not worthy of the allowances? Must we all work at the headquarters?”

He also lamented that personnel of the NCS are treated like ‘slaves’ as they work under harsh conditions without commensurate pay.

 ‘’They are treating those of us working in correctional centers as slaves. We are working in a highly hazardous environment where tuberculosis, chicken pox, covid and other contagious diseases are so alarming yet no hazard allowances.

‘’ We risk our lives on a daily basis. We have had some colleagues ambushed while escorting inmates to court, yet no incentives.

‘’Few days ago illicit items that found their way into correctional centers worth 150 million naira were destroyed at the national headquarters, now tell me how such illicit acts would stop in prisons when you are paying an inspector of the service N68,000 as monthly salaries when his counterpart in a sister agency is receiving N180,000’’, he lamented.

This came as they appealed to well-meaning Nigerians to prevail on the NCS authorities to, as a matter of urgency, pay their election duty allowances in order to boost their morale.
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