Kofi Bansah, Director General of Ghana Prisons
THE Ghana Prisons Service is soliciting for funds from the GET Fund to provide classroom structures for inmates at various Prisons Centres where BECE and WASSCE programmes have been introduced.
The Officer-in-charge of inmate’s education at the Prisons, Supt Peter Afari Mintah, who disclosed this to the Times, at the Prisons headquarters, said the service has difficulty making the programme work efficiently due to lack of classrooms to house inmates who are interested in furthering their education.
Prison centres in need of the structures are the Nsawam Medium Security Prisons (male and female), Tamale Prisons, Wa and Ankaful Prisons, respectively.
Briefing the “Times” on Friday Superintendent Peter Afari Mintah indicated that the introduction of quality education in prison service which started as the President Special Initiative for Distance Learning has gradually gained grounds.
This, he said, has encouraged a lot of the President Special Initiative for Distance Learning inmates to further their education to enable them to live better lives after serving their sentences.
“Challenges facing the prisons include inadequate classroom structures to enable all interested inmates to undergo the programme.”
Supt. Mintah explained that the skills training programmes run concurrently with the classroom teaching which had made the classroom problem an urgent need.
He said so far education results released in the prisons had been encouraging indicating that when well maintained, the programme would help in the reformation, of prisoners for the nation’s benefit.
“Formal education would prevent inmates from going back to criminal activities which brings them back to us”.
He insisted that for the work of reformation to be complete, inmates need the required food with enough nutrients to sustain them throughout their study time.
Supt Mintah said “the government spends a lot of money and resources on prisoners, therefore, they would have to come out well reformed for the state to benefit from them”.
He, therefore, appealed to government to raise the feeding fee to enable them to get the inmates’ maximum attention in the classrooms to make their work effective.
Supt. Mintah also expressed concern about allowances given to officers and inmates who sacrifice to give tuition to the student inmates.
He, called on government to make their allowances regular to motivate them to give off their best.
Supt. Mintah appealed to philanthropists, individuals, churches, corporate groups and stakeholders in education to come to their aid adding that the Ghana Prison Service would be grateful to receive anything in cash or kind.