Pademba Road Prison should reocate
Many would agree with me that the present location of the Pademba Road Maximum Prison is not appropriate for the convenience of a city. It is also crystal clear that many countries around the world have their main prisons located on the outskirts of the city or an island where criminals might find it difficult to escape. However, two main reasons could be attributed for this kind security strategy by many sovereign states in Africa.
One reason could be appropriate security measures and the other is to avoid the unnecessary sirens blown by these passing prison vehicles that convey law breakers in and out of the prison yard as if is the case of Pademba Road prison in Freetown. It could be recalled that several times when prisoners are been taken in and out of the Pademba Road prison, vehicles conveying them to the law court to be tried causes a lot of public nuisance thereby exacerbating the already congested traffic along Pademba Road.
Residents and officers located along this road are always taken by consternation when these passing vehicles sound their sirens to transport prisoners in and out of the Pademba Road Maximum Prison.
The sirens blown by these prison vehicles seem to be irritating and deafen one’s ears and many Sierra Leoneans along the Pademba Road axis have raised concern that the sound is disturbing, and brings work to a halt when it is heard.
Furthermore, many governments around the world have seen security issues as a paramount concern. Thus they always try to do their best to ensure that their main prisons are located and protected from any insecurity that might threaten the lives of ordinary citizens. But to many, the location of the Pademba Road prison has been seen by many as a security threat. An example of a security threat in our country is not far-fetched in our history books.
Sierra Leoneans could vividly remember that during the AFRC 1997 interregnum, mutineers targeted the Pademba Road prison yard and set free all the hard core criminals which worsened the already insecurity situation of the city.
Massive looting and raping became the order of the day.
Prisons in the world all over are being built to ensure better security for people and to reform those who are found guilty of contradicting the laws. Hitherto societies have recorded that prisons around the world have been the target of criminals. When the AFRC came in 1997, they broke into the Pademba Road prison and freed Johnny Paul Koroma Koroma and others. Government should fast a relocation programme re-location programe for the Pademba Road to another part of the country as they fear that history might repeat itself in the course of time.
Residents neighbouring this prison yard have expressed worries about the present location of the Pademba Road prison. “We hope and pray that President Koroma and the Director of Prisons would try and incorporate this idea of relocating the maximum prison to another area in his agenda of change.
Moreover, the mere presence of Pademba Road prison in the middle of the city has continued to serve as a security threat to many Freetownians around the city. In the midst of this insecurity situation, one might tend to ask as to whether we are safe. ‘This is not a matter of pessimism, but a security concern for all.’
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