UNIPSIL& Human Rights Launch Detention Report
UNIPSIL in collaboration with the United Nations Human Rights Commission yesterday Monday December17th, launched its report on the condition of inmates undergoing correction in prison facilities in the country.
Addressing pressmen at their Headquarter, Cabenda Lodge, Signal Hill Freetown, UNIPSIL Chief, Beatriz Balbin explained that the draft report originated from the 2007 recommendation made to the government of Sierra Leone in tackling the challenges facing the judiciary, prisons, police, and other related institutions that serve as correctional facilities.
Madam Balbin noted that as the nation is a signatory to some international statutory agreement, it is of best international practice that prison inmates be treated fairly and considered as human beings. Beatriz maintained that they have worked with the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Prison Department and other institutions to see that the report reaches out to the appropriate authorities. She also highlighted the issues discovered following their visitation of the seventeen prison facilities nationwide, issues such as overcrowding, poor hygiene and dilapidated building facilities all of which she maintained do not meet international standards. The report also captured the inadequacies of proper assessment by some of the correctional institutions. The reports further frowned at the confinement of minors or juveniles alongside adults, compounded by the hitches of inadequate food, drinking water, as well as limited medical care.
She concluded that the report is a two track approach, one of which is to raise the general interest of stakeholders, and the other to attract donor funding in order to address some of the pitfalls preventing the institutions from reaching international standards.
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