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University to roll out degree programmes for inmates

22 February 2016, 20:49 Joseph Njung'eh

Nyeri - The Presbyterian University will sponsor degree and diploma courses for inmates.

Presbyterian Church of East Africa (PCEA), Secretary General Peter Kariuki, has said the two programs will be rolled out soon for inmates in the country’s main correctional facilities.

He said the initiative is aimed at preparing inmates for jobs once they complete their sentences.

Speaking at King’ong’o maximum prison in Nyeri when he conferred diploma certificates to 42 Theological students, Kariuki asked the society to accord them a second chance to live amongst them.

He said some of the convicts set free under the President’s Power of Mercy have received hostility and rejection from their relatives and the community at large.

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“It’s sad that most of the prisoners released are being chased away instead of being integrated back into the community. They need to be given hope,” Kariuki observed.

During the colorful ceremony held behind closed doors, families and friends of the inmates had a rare chance of mingling with them.

The prison Theological Education by Extension (TEE) sponsored by PCEA covers eight units within a period of seven months, after which they are presented with certificates and transcripts.

It's director Patrick Muthungu said their focus was to aid the government in its rehabilitation efforts by taking 2 100 inmates through the course in the last five years.

“Its aim is to reduce the stigma and rejection of the reformed inmates by the community after incarceration,” he observed.

Muthungu noted that since its inception in January 2014, the initiative has introduced TEE studies to 240 inmates in the Industrial Area Remand, Langata Women, Ruiru, Kamiti Maximum Prison, Nakuru and Thika prisons.

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