Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Rwanda : The Rwanda Correctional services seeks Penal Reforms

Photo: Some of the journalist, RCS and PRAWA officials
The Rwanda Correctional Services (RCS) has established a Media Penal reform Network in a bid to improve the prison services and justice in Rwanda.
The network was established this March 16, as a way of sharing information on the activities of prisons, bringing to notice issues of justice and interventions from other organizations and justice
With the current situation of prisons and correction facilities in Africa, it has become very appealing for African countries to initiate ways in which issues affecting the inmates and activities of these facilities can be reviewed, discussed and evaluated, so as to ensure justice.
The Rwanda Correctional services (RCS), in collaboration Prison Reform Intervention in Africa (PRIA) and Prisoners Rehabilitation and Welfare Action (PRAWA), has taken this initiative of establishing the Penal Reform Network to enable the media, key policy makers and civil society (partners) and the public have their contribution towards prison reforms and correctional issues.
The RCS Deputy Commissioner General, Mary Gahonzire, said that this is a way of opening doors of Correctional facilities to the media, civil society and public, so that they have full information on the activities of prisons.
“This project will encourage sharing of information and ideas on issues of justice, between the correctional services and the public, so as to ensure that the rights of inmates are respected and the services are provided in accordance to the UN conventions” Gahonzire said.
In order to ensure the participation of focal partners, the launch of the program was followed by a five days training for various media houses, civil society and prison services. These groups were acquainted with the activities of prisons, the laws protecting inmates, and international conventions on prisons.
The media was trained on their role in justice, prisons workers were trained on human rights and best prison practices, while the civil society and key partners conducted a session on
Dr. Uju Agomoh, the Executive director of PRAWA, who also conducted the trainings, said that Rwanda has made a tremendous step to open the prison doors to the public. She said that this is the first step to attaining justice for prisoners and successful results have been registered in areas in which such projects have been launched.



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