Kenya to pardon 15 000 inmates to decongest prisons

Inmates in a Kenyan jail (Photo: Mwakilishi.com)

Plan to pardon thousands to reduce overcrowding in Kenya’s prisons

The Standard reports that Kenya plans to reduce its inmate population of over 50 000 by releasing some inmates and requiring them to do community service. The coordinator of the National Community Service Order Committee, Lawrence Mugambi, recently announced government’s plans to release 15 000 prisoners, who will be asked to do maintenance work in schools and unblock drainage systems and waterways among other activities. Read more. 

Australian state allocates more funds for police, prisons, victim support and legal aid

Jails in Victoria will receive $130 million in additional funding in the state’s budget, Yahoo News reports. Some of the money will be used to add 357 prison beds and to build a new maximum security facility. More money will also be made available for the state’s struggling legal aid system and for expanding a helpline and counselling service for victims of crime. Read more.

Trinidadian inmates using illegal cellphones to coordinate murders and other crimes

The Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago has confirmed that inmates are organising crimes from behind bars using illegal cellphones, Stabroek News reports. Kamla Persad-Bissessar said the National Security Council is planning to use mobile phone signal jammers to find phones and block calls and text messages from unapproved numbers within the island nation’s prisons. Read more.

Overcrowding, TB and staffing concerns in Irish prisons

Prison Visiting Committee reports published today reveal concerns about Ireland’s prisons, including inmates sleeping on the floor, healthy women being housed in a female prison’s health centre, and the spread of tuberculosis. According to the Irish Times, the detention of immigrants due for deportation has added to accommodation problems. Read more.

Work duties prevent US inmates attending rehabilitative arts programmes

Renowned actor-director Tim Robbins (who made the death-penalty themed film “Dead Man Walking”) has expressed concern over the fact that some American states emphasize inmate labour over attendance at rehabilitation programmes. According to the LA Times, Robbins leads The Actor’s Gang, which has presented theater workshops at facilities in California for the last six years. Read more.

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About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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