Leonard N. Ezeh, Collins I. Umeoji, Fabian B. C. Ozioko


Infrastructural challenges in Nigerian Prisons which do not allow stratification of inmates based on crime weight have often jeopardized correctional efforts. Bearing this in mind, this study examined the differential effects of psychoactive substance use and interpersonal sensitivity on hostile behaviour of prison inmates in Anambra State of Nigeria. 89 prison inmates comprising of 73 males and 16 females were participants of the study. Their ages ranged from 23 to 44 years with a mean age of 31.50 and standard deviation of 2.45. Purposive sampling technique was adopted to obtain inmates with history of psychoactive substance use from those without. Symptoms checklist (SCL-90R) by Deragatis, Lipman and Covi (1973) was administered as instrument for data collection using 2x2 factorial design and 2-way analysis of variance (2-Way ANOVA) as statistical tool. The result revealed that hostile behaviour was more with inmates with backgrounds of psychoactive substance use than those who are high on interpersonal sensitivity at F(1, 89) = 11.2, p < .05 and 6.85, p< .05 respectively. Finding theoretically implicated lack of impulse control which seems to be higher with psychoactive substance use and higher levels of interpersonal sensitivity. It is recommended that the management staff of Nigerian Prisons understand the needs of inmates with these backgrounds to be able to reduce hostility occasioned by their backgrounds.


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hostile behaviour, inmates, Nigerian prisons, interpersonal sensitivity and psychoactive substance use

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