By Theckla Gunga – EMTV News, Port Moresby
Newly-appointed Acting Correctional Service Commissioner Stephan Pokanis, says CS headquarters is fully aware of the challenges inmates at the Lorengau Jail are facing.
The challenges include living in a condemned facility, despite health authorities suggesting that they move to a new site or conduct maintenance work on existing facilities.
Inmates at the Lorengau Correctional Centre in Manus are still living at the facility that requires maintenance work. The facility was condemned after a health inspection in 2007, however, 11 years have passed and the move to a new site has not started yet.
Mr. Pokanis, the Acting CS Commissioner, says they are aware of the issue, however, they will be addressing the issues one at a time.
The facility in Manus is old, the water and the sewerage system need an urgent upgrade, and the compound needs to be extended to accommodate the increase in inmates.
There are just over 80 inmates at the jail, and all are male prisoners.
About 70 percent of them are waiting for their court hearings, while the remaining 30 are serving their sentences. And while the CS Department in Manus waits for assistance from the provincial government and CS Headquarters in Port Moresby, the inmates will continue to live in fast-deteriorating facilities.