Four inmates of the Sunyani Central Prison are taking part in this year’s West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
Deputy Superintendent of Prisons (DSP) Dennis Peasah, the Bono Regional Public Relations Officer of the Ghana Prisons Service disclosed this when he was speaking about efforts being made by the Service for inmates’ reformation in an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) on Monday at Sunyani.
He said the all-male candidates had private registration after being prepared adequately for three years to write IBM Financing, Accountancy, Economics, English language, Social Studies and Mathematics papers.
DSP Peasah stated those candidates were escorted by an officer on each examination day to prevent their escape since they were still convicted prisoners serving their sentences.
The escort officers took strategic positions to ensure safe custody but minimised undue attention and public negative reaction against the inmates, he added.
DSP Peasah emphasised the inmates did not enter the examination centres in prison attire to avoid much attraction by public attention to prevent stigmatisation during the examination period.
He said the candidates were prepared as they were committed to learning even in such a difficult environment and therefore responding favorably to the reformation and rehabilitation programmes available at the facility.
DSP Peasah said the programmes were not without financial and logistic challenges, and therefore appealed to non-governmental, charitable and corporate organisations, philanthropists and the public to support the inmates in their efforts to become responsible citizens.
He advised the public against stigmatisation of convicts, saying so many people had committed more serious offences, but had not been arrested and jailed because they had not been caught by the law.
DSP Peasah said the facility operated a Junior High School programme extracted from the Prisons’ non-formal education section, in addition to other skill training in trades such as carpentry, tailoring, ‘kente’ and smock weaving.
He announced 31 inmates had qualified to write the National Vocational Training Institute proficiency examination this year but could not register due to financial constraint.