Sixteen prisoners on remand at the Tarkwa Prison were on Tuesday freed after two courts heard their cases at the prison, under the “Justice for all project.”
Twenty two others were granted bail while applications by three prisoners were rejected. The prisoners were charged with murder, defrauding by false pretense, unlawful entry, possession of fake currency, conspiracy to commit crime, causing unlawfull damage, possession of Indian hemp and causing harm.
The courts were presided by two high court judges, Mr. Justice John Ajetnasam and Mr. Justice Constant Hometowo.
In an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) after the exercise, Justice John Ajetnasam said the “Justice for All Project” was being implemented nationwide to help decongest the country’s prisons and ensure justice for all inmates, who had been on remand for more than four years, awaiting trial.
The Chief Criminal Records Officer of the Ghana Prisons Service, Chief Superintendent Nathaniel Onyinah, said since the inception of the project in 2007, the remand population, which constituted 30 per cent of the prisons population had dropped to 21 per cent.
He said if the exercise continued, the population of remand prisoners would drastically reduce and help decongest the prison.
Chief Superintendent Onyinah expressed gratitude to all the stakeholders including the Attorney General’s Department , Judiciary Service, Ghana Bar Association, Ghana Prison Service and the Ghana Police Service for contributing to the success of the project.