Prisons service pays courtesy call on Al -Hajj
Prisons service pays courtesy call on Al -Hajj

A delegation from Ghana Prisons Service led by its Council President, Rev Dr Stephen Yenusom Wengam last week paid a courtesy call on Management and Staff of The aL-hAJJ newspaper at its Mamobi office in Accra.

Prisons service pays courtesy call on Al -Hajj
Prisons service pays courtesy call on Al -Hajj
Rev Dr Stephen Wengan, who also doubles as Head Pastor of Cedar Mountain Chapel of Assemblies of God, explained that the call was to solicit support from the media in pursuit of the council?s ten year development plan and flagship project, ?Project Efiase.?

Considering the challenges facing the prisons service, Rev Wengan said, the Council has decided to reach out to ?senior members of the inky fraternity to help us carry through some of the projects we have outlined because government alone cannot solve all the problems facing the prisons service.?

He said the prisons service has a lot of business opportunities that prospective investors can take advantage of to transform the sordid condition of the prisons in Ghana, adding that with the help of the media, ?we hope to attract investors and partner them to make use of the many opportunities available to us.?

?The prisons service has about 15000 acres of land which is not being used. If we are supported to cultivate it, we can feed Ghana. We have the capacity to sew our own uniforms and we can do same to other public institutions like schools, but what is lacking is support. So we want you to use your medium to reach out to the corporate organizations and individuals to come and partner us,? he stated.

Rev Wengan disclosed that, the prisons service is presently ready to enter into Public Private Partnership (PPP) with individuals, companies and the public ?who wish to do business with us. A lot of opportunities abound, maybe in the past we?ve not been able to let interested persons know about it these opportunities, so we are soliciting your support to help us send out this information.?

Touching on the conditions at the prisons, the Prisons Council chair stated ?I have visited all the 43 prisons in the country and I can tell you that the conditions at our prisons are not the best. Prisons that were meant to accommodate about 9000 inmates now houses 15000 inmates.?

Aside prison officers lacking training, Rev Wengan also bemoaned the lack of logistics for the prison officers, saying ?if you visit our prisons and see some of these officers, you?ll conclude that they are also prisoners. They live in the same stinking environment with the inmates. And because of this, when there is outbreak of disease in the prisons, the inmates and the officers are all affected.?

He said the Prisons Service just like other security agencies in the country needs its own hospital like the police hospital, and housing units to avoid the situation where landlords chase out prison officers over rent.

On his part, Managing Editor of The aL-hAJJ, Alhaji Bature Iddrisu thanked the chairman of the prisons council and the delegation for recognizing his outfit as a partner in helping to reshape prisons and, the Prisons Service to execute its projects.

Acknowledging the opportunities available to the prisons service, Alhaji Bature stated that the service has no excuse to fail, saying ?you have the workforce and you have lands, so nothing stops you from cultivating these lands or partnering organizations to develop it.?

He said over the years the Prisons Service has not been proactive in opening up to the media and investors, insisting that the prisons service has the capacity to do all the things it has outlined, without relying on government.

?I think one area you need to look out for is the legislation establishing the Service. You have to fine-tune it to meet modern standards,? he advised.

Source : Al – Hajj

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