Members of Council of State visit Nsawam prisons
5/18/2012 7:01:00 PM -
Nsawam, May 18, GNA - Professor Kofi Awoonor, Chairman of the Council of State, has advised prison inmates not to see the prisons as a warehouse but rather a place to help them to reform and later join society.
He advised them to spend their time to reform since no one could reform except themselves.
Professor Awoonor made the call when members of the Council and Mr Victor Smith, Eastern Regional Minister, visited the Nsawam Prisons to know the concerns of the inmates and challenges confronting them.
He advised those who intends going back into society to commit more crimes to change for the better and rather take advantage of the vocations being taught in the prisons to become citizens.
Mr Ackom Gyedu Kwame, Deputy Director General of Prisons, explained that the Ghana Prisons Service as an agency under the Ministry of Interior is mandated to ensure the safe custody and welfare of prisoners and to undertake their reformation and rehabilitation whenever practicable.
He said as one of the major agencies of the Criminal Justice System of Ghana, they contribute to the maintenance of internal security by maintaining an efficient, humane and safe reformatory penal system operated within the laws of Ghana.
Mr Gyedu added that within a planned period of three years, the service intend to develop clear linkages with partners in the overall criminal justice system and also partner with the appropriate authorities, introduce alternatives to imprisonment as well as influence the sentencing policy of the country.
It would also embark upon a consistent education of the public about the role of prisons to seek the co-operation of the pubic in the reformation and rehabilitation of prisoners and their re-integration into society after their sentences.
Maxwell Owusu Francis, the National Leader of the inmates, on behalf of his colleagues, expressed gratitude to the government for increasing the feeding grant of prison inmates and providing them with mechanized boreholes.
'We hope that much dietary associated illness will be a thing of the past' he added.
He however appealed that more mechanized boreholes are dug in the prison to solve the perennial water problem.
He also commended the government for putting in place the inmates' educational programmes, which would ensure that interested inmates could receive formal education while serving their jail terms.