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09.05.2016 Feature Article

I Concord With Chief Justice Korkpor As A Onetime Insider!!!!

I Concord With Chief Justice Korkpor As A Onetime Insider!!!!
09.05.2016 LISTEN

Barely hours after my first hand experience from the Liberia’s maximum security prison known as south beach or Monrovia central prison Chief Justice Francis Korkpor visited the prison for an assessments to know more about the inmates activities which now inform him of the numeral problems facing the prison that was erected for about 300 inmates but now play host to 1,000 plus and still counting prisoners!

Chief Justice Korkpor visit has given him a clearer picture as to the causes of the over crowdedness of the prison as the result of Magistrates and Judges sending individual or group of individuals that has no criminal records who committed minor civil offences that they the (Judges or Magistrates) could used their judgments to allow the accused to walk away on bail and the rest.

As a onetime insider who spend closed to 48 hours with inmates and prison authorities definitely concord with the concerns raised by his highness Justice Korkpor who lamented that the provision of the law should be used by its appropriate actors before incarcerating defendants!

During my brief interaction with the inmates at the overcrowded prison many of them stories worth listening to as some indicated that they have never been given any hearing for months but indeed has spend months within the walls of the prison!

Judging from the what Justice Korkpor says including “that not every time that a defendant appears and cannot file in a hand bond should he /her be sent to jail as one is innocent unless proven guilty, some people have no business to be in jail”!

His highness also indicated that “putting someone in jail is very expensive, if you are only courteous, diligent and meticulous on what you do as warning to Magistrates”!

Frankly speaking, Justice Korkpor spoke from a well inform position regarding the plights of inmates at the central prison as t he fact remained that up 15-20 persons are place behind bars daily at the prison according to the statistics that I saw at the prison for offences that Magistrates could have used their judgments to reduce the over crowdedness!

Realistically, a particular inmate that I took interest due to the complexity of his situation in which I spend quality time listening to his ordeal in which he said to me that he was handle his writ of arrest in court and sent to the central for the pass month and three days as of the time I was there without going into the merit of the case!

The inmate further that his accuser who according to him who is his uncle sends him out of the Country to purchase some musical equipments since he (inmate) is an musician and will have a fair understanding of the kinds of equipments.

But according to him, whiles en-route to Monrovia the vehicle had some mechanical problems is which belong to his uncle and in that process some of the purchased equipments were stolen by criminals and upon arrival Monrovia his uncle took him to court and since then he still behind bars without any judgment without money to hire lawyer!

During my 48 hours stay at the central prison, inmates refused to eat their daily meal due to what they referred to as rocks in the rice that is given them for consumption and the leadership of the inmates met with the then prison superintendent Adina Paye who promised to meet the kitchen staffers to proper coordinate that feeding aspect of the inmates!

Many of the inmates spoken to, told me that they were happy with the presence of the prison superintendent Adina Paye who according to them has transform the inmates minds in making them productive individuals as evidences by their free colleagues that are today in the society contributing positively and the facilities as well at the central prison.

The inmate’s leadership told me that the central prison today has her own pastries produce by the very inmates sold to them all through the initiative of the Adina Paye and they were very disappointed to hear the news that the superintendent was dismiss by authority at the Justice ministry!

As I conclude, in the first part of my experiences at the Monrovia central prison, these concerns raised by His Highness Justice Francis Korkpor must be attended to by the relevant authorities especially the Magistrates who the Chief Justice made specific reference on their activities in exercising their duties that very cardinal to the survival of the innocent until proven guilty by laws!

The author is a Broadcast Journalist and writer and can be reach at +231776590725/+231886224134 or E-mail: [email protected]

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