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Published On: Wed, Mar 1st, 2017

Shock

That not everything is alright at the Pointe Blanche Prison is – in fact – old news, but still, the revelation that the complete male prison population is on most days under guard by at best three prison guards comes as a bit of a shock.

The extreme high absenteeism about the prison staff has something to do with this, forcing the remaining guards to work long shifts. In turn, this could lead to even more sick leave.

What is most worrisome is obviously the security situation at the prison – or rather the lack of security. Countless violent incidents underscore that the limited staff at Pointe Blanche is not up to the task.

Justice Minister Boasman is “working on it” – a phrase the inmates remember all too well from previous ministers.

The Progress Committee has established that improvements came to a standstill two years ago and the Law Enforcement Council is also extremely concerned.

This should be reason enough for the current minister to put this challenge not only at the top of his list of priorities. But without action, those priorities will become the umpteenth disappointment for those who unwillingly have to call Pointe Blanche their home.




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