Carmelite Prisoners’ Interest Organisation (CAPIO), a rights group, has donated Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to Umuahia Correctional Centre as support towards the protection of inmates from infectious diseases.
Presenting the items to the centre in Umuahia on Friday, the Executive Director of the Enugu-based organisation, Rev. Fr. Ambrose Ekeroku (OCD), said the gesture was in fulfilment of the group’s mission.
Ekeroku said the PPE was CAPIO’s support to efforts by the centre to protect the inmates and workers from contracting COVID-19 as well as Lassa and Yellow Fever.
He described CAPIO as a non-profit, human rights advocacy organisation of Catholic priests based in Enugu, established in 1992.
He said: “Our interventions are focused on the provision of basic needs of inmates, free legal and medical services and rehabilitation of inmates.
“Between June and August, CAPIO has provided PPE to inmates in Abuja, Enugu and Ebonyi with funding from Misean Cara but could not extend it to other centres in the southeast due to limited funds.”
He expressed joy that the organisation was able to extend the donation to Anambra and Abia, following funding support it received from the Irish Embassy.
The priest said that the group had also been in the forefront for the domestication of the Administration of Criminal Justice Law in some states of the federation.
He said that CAPIO built and donated a water borehole to Aba Correctional Centre in 2000 and hoped to sustain its collaboration with the Umuahia centre in the interest of the inmates.
He said that under its empowerment programme, CAPIO had sponsored some inmates to register and write the West African School Certificate Examination and also enrol in the Nigeria Open University.
Ekeroku also said that the group was putting up a structure at Oji River in Enugu, christened Centre of Hope, to provide comprehensive rehabilitation and gradual reintegration of inmates that served out their terms to society.
“People expect a miracle that somebody, who had been confined at the centre for about 10 years to 15 years, should easily reintegrate himself into society.
“These people usually suffer rejection by society and most times the only people that welcome them back are criminals.
“They need to be guided, they need economic and psychological support to get back into society.
“That is what Centre of Hope stands to provide, beginning from the South-East for now and later to other states,” Ekeroku said.
He commended the authorities of the Nigeria Correctional Service for taking proactive steps to protect inmates across the federation from contracting COVID-19.
He gave the list of the items donated to the Umuahia centre to include 10 gallons of hand sanitisers, 10 cans of liquid soap and two infrared thermometers.
Others were 50 packs of hand gloves, 50 packs of Vitamin C, 25 tins of Chloroquin, 25 tins of Zinc, 25 tins of piriton and 10 rolls of drug envelopes.
Receiving the items, the Controller of the centre, Mr Julius Ezugwu, represented by Assistant Controller, Mr Samuel Anyaghara, thanked CAPIO for its kind gesture.
Ezugwu urged other non-governmental organisations in and around Abia to take a cue from CAPIO and assist the centre to take good care of the inmates.
The pharmacist in charge of the centre, Mr Obinna Isilebo, promised that the items would be put into effective use to protect the inmates from infectious diseases. (NAN)
– Dec. 4, 2020 @ 12:59 GMT |