Today January 23, 2022

Help ex-convicts to rebuild their lives—Prison Officer appeals

Deputy Superintendent of Prisons (DSP) Rejoice Adzakpa, Second in Command, Akuse Female Prison, has appealed to Ghanaians to help ex-convicts to rebuild their lives.

She said some issues contributing to recidivism (re-offending) included inadequate rehabilitation services and community reintegration challenges which required a shared approach.

Therefore, she urged the communities to as much as possible, provide an enabling environment for such persons when they were released to be reintegrated into society.

She said some environments were challenging and actively deterred them from becoming productive members of society and were rearrested within a shorter period for similar or worse crimes.

DSP Adzakpa was speaking in an interview with the Ghana News Agency after the St. Albans Anglican Branch of the Anglican Young People’s Association (AYPA), presented assorted items to the Akuse Female Prison in the Lower Manya Krobo Municipality of the Eastern Region.

The donation formed part of the Association’s Annual Charity Outreach and its social responsibility to the vulnerable in society.

The items included bottles of water, soft drinks, packs of hot meals, cooking oil, crates of eggs, buckets of powdered soap, liquid soap, toiletries, sanitary pads, clothing among others.

DSP Adzakpa said: “In our society, once you come out of prison, you are perceived to be a criminal but that is not the case,” emphasizing that the country did not have a system to properly reintegrate ex convicts.

She noted that currently, there were 11 female and 91 male inmates at the Akuse Local Prison, and said the number of prisoners was on a decline due to the challenges of COVID-19.

“Around the time of COVID-19, prisons which did not have the facility to quarantine new admissions were not allowed to do so. Around that time, we were not giving admission at all, and others were being discharged, so that has accounted for the decline,” she added.

DSP Adzakpa noted that some common crimes that the female inmates were incarcerated for included human trafficking, stealing, procession of illegal substances and occasionally murder.

She said as part of their reformation and rehabilitation, inmates were provided skills training including hairdressing, wig caps, dress making among others to fully reintegrate them into their communities when released.

She stressed that the rehabilitation of incarcerated persons was a shared responsibility by all stakeholders including prison officers, and thus called on organisations to partner with the Ghana Prisons Service to help with skills training and other productive activities to help them contribute meaningfully to society on their release.

Nana Araba Acquaah-Ba, Vice President, St. Alban Branch, AYPA, who made the presentation on behalf of the delegation, said the donation was to support the upkeep of the incarcerated females.

Source: Ghana News Agency

hammad

hammad

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