Jul 16, 2017 News
There will be a Commission of Inquiry (COI) into the devastating Camp Street Prison fire and jailbreak, says the Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan.
The Minister was at the time briefing Opposition Parliamentarians on the Prison fire and other related matters on Friday last, at the Parliament Buildings in the capital.
The Department of Public Information (DPI) informed the media, yesterday, that Ramjattan, Minister of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson; Commissioner of Police, Seelall Persaud; and Director of Prisons, Gladwin Samuels, met with a team of Opposition Members of Parliament (MPs) led by Clement Rohee, and provided a “full and frank” briefing on the fire at the Georgetown Prison along with the escape of eight prisoners, three of whom have since been recaptured.
The Opposition MPs were also briefed on the actions taken by the government and the security services to secure housing for the transferred prisoners and other related matters.
The almost two-hour long briefing commenced at 9:00hrs.
“Minister Ramjattan also advised that there will be a Commission of Inquiry into the matter and that there will be additional opportunities to examine the responses of the disciplined forces. The Opposition team made some suggestions which the government team acknowledged had some merit and will be considered.” The release from the DPI said.
The government team undertook to have an updated brief as soon as additional information is available.
Other Opposition MPs that attended the brief were Juan Edghill, Bheri Ramsarran and Harry Gill.
Meanwhile, as it relates to keeping the private sector abreast of the developments, Government officials met with the Private Sector Commission (PSC) and the Georgetown Chambers of Commerce and Industry (GCCI).
The Police Commissioner and the Director of Prisons were also part of that engagement.
Minister Patterson indicated that the meeting was an effort to ensure that key players are kept up to date with the situation as well as clear up any misconceptions.
Minister Patterson also shared that construction works at a holding facility at the Lusignan Prison on Thursday were 95 percent complete. The new facility is expected to be handed over to the Prison Services shortly.
The facility, he said, is 18 feet high and surrounded by barbed wire fencing that has been fortified.
Patterson informed Kaieteur News yesterday, that the heavy-duty works have already been carried out. Workers are now executing the ‘fine works’ and inspections.
He expressed confidence that the structure would have been handed over to the Prison Services yesterday.
However, this does not mean that prisoners will be moved in immediately since the prison authorities will have to do their own inspections and set the necessary measures in place.
When questioned on the structure, Minister Patterson explained that it is solid cast, with a buffer zone between fence and the facility to allow for a clear line of sight for prison guards. Constructed adequate security lights were also installed.
He said the structures will be like fortified sheds to allow for both segregation and safety. He emphasised that the facility will be a vast improvement over the current situation.
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