GH¢1.8 daily ration per prisoner is demeaning –Rev Akwasi Sarpong

Senior Prison officers and the author pose with Juabenhene’s rep

A 485 page book, “CORRECTIONAL EDUCATION”, which focuses on prison reforms and rehabilitation of prisoners to become productive individuals and a strategy to prevent further crimes, has been launched in Kumasi, with the Catholic Archbishop Emeritus of Kumasi, Most Rev. Dr. Peter Akwasi Sarpong, expressing concern over meagre daily ration given to prisoners.

Authored by Nana Dr. Kofi Antwi II, the chief of Odumasi, in the Asante Akim Central Municipality, the book recommends strategies for prevention of further crimes by prison inmates.

It also highlighted the prevalent deplorable state of prisons in the country and the need to restore sanity in the system and enable prisoners to adapt to reforms and fit into society upon their release.

“Correctional Education” is the third book to be published by NanaDr. Kofi Antwi II, who doubles as the Nifahene of the Juaben Traditional Area.

The Catholic Archbishop Emeritus of Kumasi, Most Rev. Dr. Peter Akwasi Sarpong, speaking at the launch bemoaned the dehumanisation of the prisons in Ghana.

He noted that there are more people who have been incarcerated in the prison for merely stealing a hen or loaf of bread because they were hungry, yet some people, including contractors, who rob the nation of millions of dollars to build mansions acquire luxurious cars and live

promiscuous lifestyles walk free.

The Catholic Bishop said the GHc1.8 daily ration per prisoner was demeaning and appealed to the government to do something about deplorable conditions of the prisons and improve the plight of prisoners.

According to Bishop Akwasi Sarpong, he had embarked on annual visitation to the Kumasi Central Prisons over the 40 years he had been in priesthood, culminating the supply of drugs to inmates by England-based Intercare.

The Publisher of the book, Elder Isaac Awuku, editor of the Advent Press in Accra while reviewing the book, said it had passed through four editorial stages of editorial assessment;Developmental editing, Copy editing and Proof reading, thus making the book unique,

accurate and useful for public consumption.

He said the launch of “Correctional Education” has been the Senior Prison Officer’s dream and desire before he goes on retirement.

The Publisher noted that society is at risk because prisoners are discharged into the community but cannot fit in a community and thus a threat to members of the public and emphasised that the book is handy because it provides public education on reforms.

He said while illiterate prisoners go back to the community and commit more crimes, an educated prisoner, described as a refined gentleman, will ensure peaceful co-existence with society and, therefore, has a bright future.

Nana Kofi Antwi, the author, disclosed that he joined the Prison Service in 2002 and held various capacities, including counsellor, instructor, investigator and trainer of trainees, during which period he gained insight into prison administration.

He noted that most of the prisoners who were in the youth bracket comprised school dropouts or outright illiterates, hence his resolve to correct the ills in the prisons system through his landmark book, a product of years of research.

According to him, educated prisoners found they were misplaced and, therefore, are potential for rehabilitation and strategy for reforms, realising that higher education will impact on their lives.

Nana Osei Busumuru, Apagyahene of Juaben, who represented the Chief of Juaben, Nana Otuo Siriboe II lauded the author, who is also the Assistant Director of Prisons and officer-in- charge of Manhyia Prisons, in his effort at ensuring total reforms and changes in the

prison system, following recommendations for the consideration of the Ghanaian authorities.

The launching ceremony was chaired by Deputy Director of Prisons, Mr.Samuel Yaw Tannor, who described the author as a distinguished personality who always sought the welfare of prison inmates.

At the launch of “Correctional Education”, were Mrs. Theodora Jackson,Principal of Jackson College of Education and Prof. Victor Owusu of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi.


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