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Nsawam Prison Exceeds Capacity by Over 2,000 Inmates   
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The Nsawam Medium Security Prison, built in 1960, has exceeded its ideal average capacity by 2,233, since the prison currently holds 2950 inmates instead of the original capacity of 717.

Out of the latest inmates’ population of 2950, 1165 are convicts, 1554 are on remand, 79 have been sentenced to life imprisonment and 82 are condemned prisoners.

These were made known today when the Commissioner of CHRAJ, Mr Justice Emile Short, visited the prisons to familiarize himself with the conditions of the inmates. He was accompanied by his two Deputies, Ms Anna Bossman, Deputy Commissioner of Legal Affairs and Investigation and Mr Richard Quayson, Deputy Commissioner of Research and Public Education and other staff of the Commission.

The Director of the Nsawam Medium Security Prison, Mr Alex Ansong –Agyapong, said the prison does not have enough vehicles for its operations especially when it has to send sick inmates to hospital, and appealed for assistance.

The Commissioner of CHRAJ, Mr Justice Emile Short, expressed concern about the overcrowding in the remand prison block as well as those who have been on remand for many years without trial. He said, CHRAJ will follow up on some of the complaints made by the inmates.

Meanwhile, some inmates of the Nsawam Medium Security Prison who have been on remand for several years have appealed to CHRAJ and the Attorney General and Minister of Justice, to take steps to ensure speedy justice for them.

Kojo Atta Panyin one of the inmates of the prison said he has been on remand for 11 years and has been in court only once.

Dan Herjis Amejro said he was arrested on 25th August 1993 but has been in court only once on 8th June, 2006.

The inmates made the complaints during the visit by the CHRAJ Boss and his two Deputy Commissioners.

Kojo Atta Panyin and Dan Amejro said, their lives have become very miserable as a result of lack of speedy justice for them.

In a related development, a 34-year old inmate of the female prison said she had almost finished serving a five year sentence for stealing when she attempted to commit suicide due to poor conditions in the prison and is currently serving another 5-year sentence in prison for the attempted suicide.
Source: Emmanuel Akorli/peacefmonline.com

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