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Members of public urged to accept detainees after release

Members of the public have been urged to accept inmates after being released from Prison since they are already rehabilitated, the Principal Secretary (PS) State Department of Correctional Services Dr. Salome Beacco has said.

Consequently, Dr. Beacco said her officers have scaled up efforts of rehabilitating the offenders to ensure they are reintegrated into society and become productive members of the community.

“The mandate of probation officers is to take care of both the inmates and the communities. We engage them through mediation and counseling. Also, we have community volunteers who are from the community who assist,” said Dr. Beacco while speaking to the media at Makueni GK Prison during an inspection tour.

“The community can learn to forgive the offenders, try to understand those who have served custodial and non-custodial sentences that they are reformed and ready to be resettled into the society and become productive members in the community using the skills they have learned,” posed the PS.

She disclosed that correctional facilities have been transformed from places of punishment to rehabilitation centers where inmates and prison officers have to collaborate to make things work differently.

“Because we have transformed and moved away from punishment to rehabilitation of our inmates, that has credibly helped the relationship between inmates and the officers so that they work collaboratively for the better of the inmates without neglecting the victim as well,” Dr. Beacco noted.

“One of our rehabilitation programmes involves training prisoners in many skills such as carpentry, construction, tailoring, and cabro making to ensure they can fend for themselves once they are released from prison,” she added.

On food production, the PS said the huge land they have across the country will be utilized to produce more food that will increase food security besides generating an income.

“In Makueni we have land under orchards and we are getting an income because of the orchards where we grow oranges and mangoes on 30 acres of land. We intend to increase the acreage to either 40 or 50,” she said.

Earlier Dr. Beacco, paid a courtesy call to Makueni Governor Mutula Kilonzo Jnr where they agreed to collaborate to offer services that are affordable in utilizing the inmates who are supposed to be productive in society.

On his part, Mutula welcomed the idea saying the County governments would benefit a lot if prisoners could be used to offer services hence making a saving from the huge monies asked by contractors.

The Governor promised to drill a borehole at the Makueni GK Prison to help end the acute shortage of water at the correctional facility.

During her tour, she gave out blankets, mattresses, and slippers to Makueni GK Prison, Women, and Remand respectively.

The PS was accompanied by Ag. Secretary Probation and Aftercare Dr. Christine Obondi and Commissioner of Prisons Brig (Rtd) John Warioba among other officers from the State Department of Correctional Services.

By Patrick Nyakundi and John Mutinda

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