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Regional News of Monday, 14 April 2014

Source: Edwin Siaw | Koforidua

Over 700 inmates cram 3 flush toilets at Koforidua prison

Sanitary conditions at the Sekondi Central Prison in Koforidua is deteriorating as all 714 male prison inmates at the detention centre currently use only three water closets.

Inmates queue for long hours to attend to natures call, a situation which sometimes compel them to defecate on themselves or in polythene bags.

This was revealed by one of the inmates at the prison during a familiarization visit by the Eastern regional minister, Julius Debrah.

Enumerating the challenges facing convicts at the prison, the head of the inmates who spoke on the condition of anonymity stated that inmates have over the years been making do with only two of the few showers.

He also disclosed that acute water shortage has hit the place following the burst of the two water reservoir which provided them with water when the commodity is scarce.

"We are being killed by scarcity of water. The only two polytanks are all burst, so please come to our aid,” he pleaded with the regional minister.

While acknowledging the efforts of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government in adjusting upwards their daily feeding fee from 60 pesewa to GHc1.80p, the inmates appealed to the government to equip their ICT laboratory with computers.

"We are also part of the better Ghana Agenda. We all took part in the 2012 elections, so it will not be out of place to also provide us with the better Ghana laptops. Just as Tsatsu Tsikata came out of prison to impact meaningfully to society so can we,’’ he said.

The Eastern regional minister asked the inmates to remain focused and not be swayed by the fact that they are confined.

Meanwhile, the Sekondi Central Prison in Koforidua has been hit by tuberculosis and chicken pods outbreak.

Prison authorities say twenty and two cases of chicken pox and tuberculosis respectively have been recorded, a situation that needs immediate attention before it escalates.

Deputy Eastern regional minister, Mavis Ama Frempong, who accompanied her boss on the visit stated that the regional coordinating council will liaise with the health ministry appropriate measures to be taken.