Call for more dormitories, staff houses for prison


Acting Correction Services Commissioner Stephen Pokanis has called for four more dormitories and 20 new staff houses to be built at the Buimo prison in Morobe to address overcrowding and manpower shortage that have resulted in three prison breaks.
Pokanis, who is the Deputy commissioner corporate affairs, said the overcrowding of detainees at Buimo was no longer a CS responsibility but for all law and justice sector agencies and the government.
“Correction Services does not have funds to build new detainee dormitories and new staff houses in the 2017 budget for Buimo correctional institute.
“The manpower shortage at Buimo is caused by accommodation issue for (additional) officers at the institution.
“The overcrowding of detainees is and will continue to be a major issue.”
Pokanis said the commanding officer, management team and officers at Buimo did all they could to prevent the escapes. “But the escape or breakouts will continue until the wheels of law and justice sector start rolling by bringing services to solve this crisis,” Pokanis said.
He called for the recruitment of new correctional service officers and for the Correctional Service to find new land to relocate low-risk detainees. The current site can cater for remand and maximum detainees.
“The government must provide K20 million in 2018 for Buimo correctional institute for officers and detainee accommodation and for building of a new low-risk centre.
“This is a law and justice matter and must be addressed.”

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