Judges vow to reconsider judgments handed to remand suspects

Some judges have vowed to reconsider how they sentence and remand suspects after witnessing at first hand the inhumane conditions under which prisoners are kept. Some had only heard about it on radio or seen on television the inhumane conditions under which prisoners are kept in Ghana.
They had never entered any of our prisons to witness these conditions. But upon the instructions of the Chief Justice, judges in the Greater Accra region were detailed to the Nsawam and Akuse prisons to find out for themselves how prisoners are held.
The visit follows a JoyNews documentary titled “Locked and Forgotten” which revealed the plight of remand inmates in the country’s prisons.
The judges told JoyNews this visit will play a crucial role in the way they sentence suspects.
“This is the first time actually to see things for myself. I am really touched by the things i saw. the smell i experienced is quite disheartening. Especially with the remand prisoners the situation is too dire to even consider.
“I think we need to have reforms. It will certain inform the way i will judge cases in terms of the sentences.
“Except it is a non-bailable offence, the person must be granted bail,” one of the judges said.
Another of the judges advised her colleagues to apply the law but use wisdom in their application.
Chairman of the Justice for All Program, Justice Clemence Honyenuga who led the Nsawam delegation says things will change moving forward. – Myjoyonline.com

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