Twenty four former inmates and one currently serving jail term in Mile II Central Prison, Thursday graduated after successfully completing six months training in Electrical Installation. The training jointly organized by he Gambia Prisons Service in collaboration with Insight Training Centre, is meant to reform, prepare and integrate them in to society and to become productive citizens.
Ansumana Manneh, Acting Director General of Gambia Prisons Service, said it has come at a time when the new government is endeavoring to reform the prisons department in consonance with the code of conduct of Amnesty international and other laws governing the administration of the prisons departments.
"The prisons are seen by many people as a correction center where people are kept for some time then released or convicted."
Manneh said they correct inmate, reform them, rehabilitate and prepare them for re-integration in to the society.
"The transformation package in the prison would give hope and better life to all incarcerated within a short period of stay."
Ismaila Ceesay, Principal Insight Training Center, said it was the first time for inmates to be trained and skillfully graduating in Electrical Installation. The program he said was jointly sponsored by PUM Netherlands senior expert and Insight Training Center at the tune of D 0.5 million to train 35 inmates. "The training includes training materials, salaries and administrative cost, and out of the 35 inmates 25 have successfully graduated."
Ceesay implore on them to make best use of the skills and contribute immensely to national development and be proud citizens of The Gambia.
Bulli Dibba, Permanent Secretary Ministry of the Interior, said the Gambia was founded on the principles of freedom of movements, peruse a career and freedom to make a choice, unfortunately some of them either by intent or mistake made wrong choice.
"It is exercise that everyone deserves a second chance and today you has been given a second chance, and I want you to honor and value it."
PS Dibba called on them to make promises that when they go back to society, they will make best use of their lives for the interest of their families and the country.
Anthony G. Mendy, Director Tertiary and Higher Education at the Ministry of Higher Education said the desire of the government of The Gambia is to have a well-educated, trained, skilled, healthy, self-reliant and enterprising population. He said technical and vocational education and training has the potential to create self-employable opportunities thereby contributing to the socio-economic development of The Gambia.