Enga police cells are ‘unliveable’

National, Normal


RESIDENT judge of Enga province Graham Ellis has described the conditions of the Wabag police cells as “unliveable” by any human being.
He said: “If only smell could be recorded, we would do just that and send it to the authorities to show just how badly the police cells in Wabag smells, so that positive actions can be done to rectify the current situation in the Wabag police Station.
“We can record what is said with a tape recorder.  We can record what we see with a camera.  It is a pity we cannot record what we smell and send it to those who can and should be fixing this problem,” Justice Graham Ellis said last Friday.
He said: “If there is any person who has any doubt about whether the existing police cells in Wabag breach section 37(17) of the Constitution, which requires that ‘all persons deprived of their liberty shall be treated with humanity and with respect for the inherent dignity of the human person’, then they only have to come and smell them to remove any doubt.  Those who are housed in those cells and those who visit those cells cover their nose because of the stench.”  
Justice Ellis called on the police commissioner or someone within the police force to do something about the current situation where the Health Department had a year ago “condemned” the Wabag police cells as “unliveable” by any human beings.
He said: “I recognise the police commissioner is a busy man.
“That is why I added the words ‘or his delegate’ in the hope that someone at police headquarters cared enough about the fact that the police cells in Wabag had been condemned by the Department of Health more than a year ago to (1) be doing something about that problem, and (2) tell the National Court in Wabag what is being done and by when.”
He added that the Porgera Joint Venture (PJV) had informed his office that they (PJV) would begin carrying out some repairs and maintenance at the existing police cells on Wednesday. 
“That contribution should be acknowledged with appreciation,” he said.