Deputy Internal Affairs Minister calls for prisoners’ rights to be respected
The Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs, Mr Sheka Tarawally, aka Shekito, has admonished Prison Officers in the country to treat inmates humanely.
“Prisoners are human beings and no matter what crime they may be accused of, or convicted for, their rights must be respected,’’ he stressed.
Mr. Tarawally gave the admonition when he paid a working visit to the Pademba Road maximum prison in Freetown recently.
He said the promotion and protection of prisoners’ rights while in custody was the foundation stone of prison management and should not influence prison officers in the way they conduct their duties.
Some prisoners pleaded to the Deputy Minister for the government to allow them to register and exercise their franchise in future general elections.
Mr. Tarawally tasked the prison administration to set aside a day known as ‘Prison Day’ to create awareness of stakeholders and the public on the role of the prison in national development.
The day, he noted, could also be used to address the negative attitudes towards improving the conditions of the prisons.
Mr. Tarawally indicated that the government would continue to support and assist the prison service in ensuring that programmes of inmates were geared towards reforming them to contribute towards national development.
He disclosed that government in its efforts to solve the understaffing challenges bedeviling the prison service has given approval for the recruitment of more personnel to boost the staff.
“The government is aware of the challenges under which personnel of the prison service works and lives and it is adopting measures to address logistics, transportation and accommodation challenges of the prisons,” he concluded.
By Sheikh Ahmed
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