As the first gentleman of our dear country, I know you have a lot on your desk to attend to but I humbly crave your indulgence very briefly to read through this short letter which touches on your government’s support for the Ghana prisons Service and what I believe could still be done; especially with regards to vehicles to see the noble service grow into one of the best Correctional facilities on the globe.
Mr. President, Article 205 (2) of the 1992 constitution of Ghana states that, “The Prisons Service shall be equipped and maintained to perform its traditional role efficiently”. I know this is the part of the constitution that keeps reminding you on making sure you do what you can to equip and maintain the seemingly neglected important security institution in Ghana.
Sir, let me commend your government for some of the programmes rolled out that has been of immense benefit to both officers and inmates; some of which includes the Water for All Project, that saw 21 Mechanized borehole water system erected in selected or challenged prison facilities across the country in 2019.
The Justice for All Programme (JFAP) since its roll out in 2017, have being the best way to decongest our overcrowded facilities and also brought smiles to the faces of wrongfully sentenced inmates, and overdue remand prisoners.
In Dire Need of Operational Vehicles
Mr. President, humbly; on the 22nd May, 2019, H.E the Vice President after handling over 21 Mechanized Boreholes to the Service in a short ceremony at the Kumasi Central Prison, reiterated the government’s agenda of not going to leave any one behind and called it the ‘Inclusive Transformation Agenda’.
“The President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, is very committed and is working towards what he calls Inclusive transformation; that we have to transform this country in a way that makes sure that nobody is left behind. We have to include everybody in the transformation process, and when you look at the policies that the President has been rolling out since we’ve been in government, it is all driven by this philosophy of inclusive transformation and the fact that we shouldn’t leave anybody behind”
Sir, personally, I will keep on praising your government for the Water for All projects, and Justice for All for programme; but recently it looks as if the Prisons Service is being left behind in the ‘Inclusive Transformation Agenda” which was promised in 2019 at the Kumasi Central Prison. We are faced with a lot of inadequacies but chief of it all to me, is the inadequate functional operational vehicles; namely Pick-Ups, Buses and utility vehicles.
Mr. President, I am scribbling this letter on a borrowed laptop amidst a heavy heart especially seeing our close sister agency , the Ghana Police Service being equipped and retooled with different set of vehicles, since 2018 to the recent one that saw your good self presenting motorbikes, Pick-Ups and armor vehicles to them. This is a big plus to your government but for a smooth and efficient Criminal Justice System, the Ghana Police Service and the Judiciary cannot be retooled or equipped whiles the Ghana Prisons Service with less than 50 facilities across the country still battles with issues of vehicles that make transportation of both officers and inmates a herculean task.
Mr. President, as I said in my introduction, I wouldn’t take much of your time this morning but should there be any distribution of Pick-Ups, buses, utility vehicles to security services, kindly remember us, just as you have been doing for the Ghana Armed Forces and the Ghana Police Service since 2018. Please, turn your attention to the Prisons Service where the Safe Custody and Welfare of Prisoners are key in National Security matters.
Sir, I know this letter will touch your heart; and should you start sharing the national cake again for the security services, DO NOT PASS US BY.
L/Cpl Emmanuel Boateng Agyemfra.
The writer is a Prison Officer with the Manhyia Local Prison and can be contacted via [email protected]