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Opinions of Saturday, 19 December 2009

Columnist: Akposoe, ivan

Prison not slave camp

It is sad to see how crowded our prisons are.This makes the places look more of a slave camp.The inmates lie very close to each other,using virtually every space in the cells.One may wonder how fresh the air is during respiration.

Nsawam prisons in the Eastern Region,was originally built to house 717 inmates.Currently,it has risen to about 31000.Ankaful prisons in the Central Region, originally was to house 300 inmates,but has also risen to about 800.I think this people are not being treated fairly. whiles others sleep,some stand and others sit.Some even go to the extent of sleeping on water closets,since they can not cheat nature.This treatment is all in the name of punishment.They are there to be reformed back to society and not to be molested.The irony of the situation is that,some inmates are on remand,but treated as criminals.

The spread of skin disease is very high.Chief amongst them is chicken pox, whereas the are inadequate drugs to cure this disease when they break.A basic necessity,water is difficult to come by.They do not have regular supply of water.This makes living very uncomfortable to both inmates and guards..when the situation gets worse,then government begins to spend money on such issue, which could have been prevented.Monies needed for other pressing areas of the economy,will be channeled to arrest the problems.

I think new structures should be erected or existing ones to be expanded to improve upon conditions in the prisons.

Akposoe Ivan

Ghana Institute of Journalism