A 13-member council to provide policy guidance for the effective administration of the Ghana Prison Service has been inaugurated in Accra.
Inaugurating the council, the Deputy Minister of the Interior, Mr James Agalga, said the prison service played a critical role in ensuring the reformation, safety and welfare of prisoners.
The council, which is chaired by Pastor Stephen Wengan, includes Mr Solomon Appiah, Nana Baffour Okumanin, all nominees of the President, Mr Samuel Amankwah, Ministry of the Interior, Ms Matilda Baffour –Awuah, Director General of Prisons.
Others are Mr Dominic Ayine, Attorney General’s Department, Mr Amoako Adjei, Ghana Bar Association, Mr Sampson Nii Trebi, Nana Daasebre Kwebu Ewusi VII, National House of Chiefs, Mr Leopold K. A. Ansah, Mr Salisu Aduna, Ghana Prisons Service, Dr Kwabena Opoku-Adusei and Mr Benson Tongo Baba.
As part of their functions, Mr Agalga said the council would advise the ministry on the formulation of policies to improve on the welfare and conditions at the various prisons.
He charged the council to help draw strategies to improve the conditions at the prisons in line with modern trends.
Touching on the non-custodial sentencing policy which the ministry was currently advocating, Mr Agalga urged the council to make relevant inputs to address overcrowding and other challenges of the country’s prisons.
He said the non-custodial policy which sought to adopt community services for minor offence would help to decongest the prisons and make conditions better for inmates.
The Chairman of the council, Mr Wenga pledged the council’s commitment to contribute their quota to transform prisons in the country.