Prisoners want to participate in SGR construction project
11 August 2015, 10:45
Nairobi - Convicts serving sentences in Kenya’s prisons want the government to allow them to work at infrastructural projects as a way of harnessing their labour power.
Peter Ouko, a celebrated inmate at Kamiti Prison who last year graduated with a diploma in law, said the country stands to benefit a lot if it harnesses the labour force of prisoners in the different institutions in the country.
Speaking on Monday during the commemoration of the International Prisoner’s Justice Day at Nairobi Industrial Area Prisons, Ouko who spoke on behalf of other inmates said Kenya has close to 56 000 inmates who can help the country to grow if allowed to work.
“We have countries in different parts of the world where prisoners do labour intensive jobs at a cost. Kenya should emulate the same and use its inmates to work on serious infrastructural projects like the standard gauge railway that is being constructed,” said Ouko.
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“It is no use locking up able bodied men and women in prison doing nothing much, when they can be productive if allowed to work,” added Ouko who was widely cheered by his fellow inmates.
Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery, Prisons Commandant Isaiah Osugo and other top prison service officers were present during the function.
Nkaissery reiterated the government’s commitment to see to it that country’s prisons are decongested and reforms are done in the sector before the end of the year.
Chief Justice Dr Willy Mutunga was represented at the function by Justice Luka Kimaru.
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