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Akua Donkor Appeals To Govt To Release Remand Prisoners
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The Founder and Leader of the Ghana Freedom Party (GFP), Mrs Akua Donkor, has appealed to the government to, as a matter of urgency, release all remand prisoners from the various prisons in the country.

According to her, the practice of remanding accused persons without trial was the major cause of overcrowding, insanitary and terrible health conditions in the countrys prisons.

She made the appeal in an interview with the Daily Graphic and also called on the various criminal justice institutions in the country to put in the requisite policies that would tackle the discrepancies associated with remanding suspects in the country.

Her appeal comes in the wake of the recent cholera outbreak in many parts of the country.

According to her, most prisons and police cells did not have the requisite materials to tackle cholera and other debilitating diseases, and were also not battle-ready to handle the Ebola disease in the event of an outbreak in the country.

Intricacies of practice

Mrs Donkor explained that she recently undertook a working visit to the Tantra-Hills Police Station in Accra to keep herself abreast of activities and the living conditions there.

During the visit, she said, she heard that one of the inmates had allegedly died of cholera.

Throwing more light on the situation, the founder of the GFP stated that initial attempts by officials of the station to help the sick inmate access medical care was hampered due to reports by medical personnel that the health facility was full and could not accommodate him.

Due to this development, he was taken back to the cells, and that was when he died. Since then, no precautionary measures have been put in place to prevent such eventualities from occurring, she said in Twi.

She said all prisoners and those in police cells who had not committed any heinous crimes, except that, for instance, they owed money to the state, financial institutions or individuals should be released to ease the pressure on amenities at such places.

My appeal is for the provision of a better framework to curb the incidence of cholera and other fatal diseases in our prisons and police cells. I dont mean to say that armed robbers and other deviants should be released, she stressed.

Desist from granting loans

Mrs Donkor, in a related development, said most banks and financial institutions in the country gave out loans to distressed and needy persons just to facilitate their business enterprises.

According to her, such institutions were only interested in satisfying their selfish gains and did not look at the ability of borrowers to pay them back.

Banking and financial institutions that give loans to poor people to start or grow their businesses should put an immediate stop to it. Dont be pushing them with the money with the aim of making ludicrous profits at the end of the day.

Such people are hungry and believe you me, they would use the money to feed themselves and their families without investing in any business ventures. They wont be able to pay back the loan too. Any of you who refuses to heed this advice does so at his peril.

The situation where innocent persons are arrested and imprisoned for failing to honour loan deals is a prime cause of the rise in armed robbery and other social vices in the country, she noted.


Speaking on measures to help address the challenges, Mrs Donkor called on the government to implement a scheme that would help provide funding support to able men and women to establish and expand their businesses.

The move, she said, would help address the many challenges associated with unemployment in the country.
Source: Daily Graphic

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