Prison inmates to be allowed phone calls

The Ministry of Interior has disclosed plans to allow inmates across the country’s prisons access to their relatives and legal counsels as part of efforts to improve the welfare needs of inmates.

The move, according to Interior Minister Mark Woyongo is also to facilitate communication between inmates and their relatives while in custody.

“The ministry has signed a contract with MSM communication to introduce telecom services in some selected prisons to facilitate communication between the inmates and their families, friends and lawyers in a controlled manner on a pilot basis at no cost to government,” Mr. Woyongo said.

Poor conditions at the country’s prisons have raised questions about their ability to reform offenders. Challenges such as overcrowding, inaccessibility to legal services, among others befuddle reformation of prison inmates.

Although some interventions have been put in place by the state and other Civil Society Organisations to address such issues, there is still more to do to improve the situation.

Announcing the new directive which is currently on a pilot basis, Mark Woyongo also indicated that use of the technology will be closely monitored.

He however maintained that the mechanism comes at no cost to the government.