By KESSIE TADAP
A FORMER convict is appealing to prisoners and ex-convicts to connect with positive-thinking people who can help them live a meaningful life.
Thomas Elton Marinae made the appeal after police killed two ex-convicts in the robbery attempt in down-town Port Moresby’s Rickshaw Restaurant on Sunday night.
“The duo were reformed but they returned to crime. Their families are left without a father and one of them had a week-old baby,” he said.
Mr Marinae said this indicated that the system of rehabilitation for life after prison was ineffective.
“Although the onus is on ex-convicts to refrain from crime, the Government and the communities must help provide an environment conducive for them to return to society.
“Most reformed ex-convicts step out of prisons with reformed mindsets, but due to lack of proper and effective after-care rehabilitation programmes (ARP), they return to a life of crime,” he said.
“They do so for economic reasons, for the needs of their families. This is because they find a hostile society confronting them even after they had served their sentence.”
He urged the Government make it a priority to set up positive and effective ARPs with innovative ways and initiatives to cater for prisoners’ reintegration with society.
“Life in prison is very different from life in society. In prison, food, beddings and shelter are provided.
“When they are released back to society, the standard of life would have advance, making it difficult for them to re-adjust.
“Ex-convicts should connect with the right people or good-thinking individuals with positive mindsets who can encourage and provide positive guidance to live meaningful lives,” he added.