09.04.2005 Crime & Punishment

CHRAJ concern about conditions of police cells in Ahafo-Ano districts

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Tepa (Ash), April 9, GNA - Mr Anthony Aduku-Aidoo, the District Director of Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) in the Ahafo-Ano North District of Ashanti has described the sanitation and health conditions at the police cells in the Ahafo-Ano North and South districts as very poor and unacceptable and called for immediate improvement of the situation.

This was contained in a report on the inspection of police cells at Tepa, Manfo, Abonsuaso and Wioso on March 30, 2005.

According to the report signed by Mr Aduku-Aidoo and submitted to the Ashanti Regional Director of CHRAJ, facilities for washing down and first aid boxes were not available, ventilation and lighting were very poor, there were no separate cells for women and the only toilet facilities in all the police cells were smelling pan latrines for male inmates.

Part of the report stated that there were no sanitation towels in any of the police cells, adding that, there were few blankets at Tepa police cell and sometimes the inmates sleep on bare floor with a lot of stench.

The report identified transport and communication equipment, accommodation, inadequate police personnel, stationery and office furniture as well as lack of funds to feed the inmates and pay for their hospital bills as some of the major problems facing the police personnel in the two districts.

It cited Abonsuaso police station, which was being manned by only one Police Inspector as a threat to security in the area and called on the police administration to send additional personnel there. The report appealed to the Ahafo-Ano North and South district assemblies and the Police Administration to disinfect the cells at regular intervals to get rid of insects like mosquitoes, bedbugs and cockroaches to ensure good health of the inmates.

It made passionate appeal to institutions, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and individuals to provide student mattresses and blankets for distribution to the various police cells in the two districts.

The report praised the Ahafo-Ano North District Assembly for making funds available for provision of water closet toilet and bath facilities at the Tepa police cells. The work on the project is in progress.

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