ABC interacts with Salone prison
Consequent to President Koroma’s call for change of attitude, senior executives of the Attitudinal and Behavioural Change (ABC) Secretariat on Friday 2nd made a stopover visit to the Sierra Leone Prison head office in Freetown and interacted with senior and junior Prison Officers.
In his statement to a sizeable number of Prison Officers (at some stage of what is called ‘Director’s parade’), the National Coordinator of ABC, Madam Nanette Thomas, asked the officers to always act professionally while performing their contractual obligations as security personnel.
“With this,” she maintained, “it will ensure that the Sierra Leone Prisons Department will reclaim its respect in society.”
Madam Nanette brings to the reminder of officers, the occurrences of awful and uncalled attitudes of a number of Prisons Officers which have caused bad public perceptions against the Prisons Department.
She called on the officers to observe the fundamental rights of prisoners, as she puts it: “imprisonment is not condemnation but correction.”
She described attitudes as ‘the paint brush of the mind.’ She however encouraged the officers to drop their negative attitudes and behaviors in place of the positives; as such usefully ensuring long life and posterity.
She furthered though that ‘bad mind sets’ are not only self-destructive, but adversely affect national development.
She admonished the officers that a positive mind set could be attained if they manage their finances, relationships, environments, spiritualities, and health properly.
Madam Thomas urged all (prison officers) to desist from distorted thinking, over magnification of issues, destructive labeling of colleagues, divisive tendencies and over ambition to conquer at all cost.
“It is the desires of ABC Secretariat to form an ABC club for prison officers. Members of this club will be trained on matters relating to the importance of positive manners in the direction of national uplifting,” she said.
She said the trained club members will serve as mentors and role models to their workmates and society generally.
She however called on the officers to fancy upgrading their educational statuses as the potency of their human resource capacity determines their future promotion.
In his part, Director of ABC, Dr. Ivan Ajibola Thomas said even though the Prisons Department is infested with bad officers, there are disciplined ones.
He commended those who have performed very good and called on the others to emulate their colleagues.
Dr. Thomas observed however that the trafficking of drugs and other prohibited substances has not only jeopardized the Central Prison yard, but has undermined state security.
He stressed the need to have Sierra Leoneans avoid hiding under the conditions of poor services in place of unprofessional conducts.
“Employees of ABC Secretariat have not been paid their monthly salaries for three months now. However, we are committed to our jobs,” he said.
He beseeched the officers to be committed to their jobs. “Prisons Officers,” he said, “are vital in the dispensation of justice and should be seen behaving positively at all times.”
The Acting Director Prisons Department, Brima Biro-Kamara cheerfully thanked management of ABC for educating his personnel on issues of good attitude and assured them of his organization’s fullest collaboration.
He called on the officers to make good use of what was told to them and always try to be meticulous in the exercise of their duties as security officers.
By Momoja Lappia
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