Be thankful, prisoners told

National, Normal

The National, Tuesday 02nd April, 2013

PRISONERS should appreciate government efforts and its development partners in addressing their welfare, Correctional Service Commissioner Martin Balthazar says.
He was responding to claims by the escapees from Beon jail over the lack of attention by prison authorities on their welfare.
He said the claims were misleading because over the years, prisons nationwide had benefited from various initiatives aimed at changing the lives of prisoners.
“I thank the churches and non-government organisations for their support.
“We have programmes coordinated by officers,” he said.                                                     Balthazar said these support were provided to lower tension in prisons where the prisoners were the sole beneficiaries.”
Goilala MP Daniel Mona presented K50,000 to Bomana jail recently for the benefit of prisoners from his electorate.
Balthazar said that amount would be used on various activities under the jail’s rehabilitation programme.                                                                                             He also confirmed that Madang Governor Jim Kas also presented K200,000 to Beon jail last December.
“Madang jail has been given support and the conditions there are good yet prisoners do not appreciate such efforts.”
Balthasar made special mention of the education programme for inmates who attend classes on a “leave of absence”.                                                                                 He said education programmes such as the College of Distance Education were provided where a good number of inmates were benefitting from.                         The National Capital District has taken the lead in this programme, he added. “Prisoners attend classes. And as long as they don’t abuse this privilege they will continue to benefit,” he said.