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Focus on rehab, prisons minister urges

2012-07-11 19:30

Pretoria - Correctional services officers must focus on the rehabilitation of offenders so they can have a better life after their sentences, Correctional Services Minister Sbu Ndebele said on Wednesday.

"Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future," he told officers at the Reformed Church in Pretoria.

Ideally the department should equip inmates with the skills to allow them to leave prison a changed person.

It was the department's aim to have correctional centres, instead of prisons.

Officers had to create an environment within prisons that would allow offenders to become better people, he said.

Their last hope of rehabilitation was with correctional services, after having passed through the police and justice system.

Ndebele was appointed minister of the department on 12 June, taking over from Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula.

Comments
  • ralph.thornley - 2012-07-11 19:54

    While South Africa prides itself on having the most progressive constitution among civilised nations of the world, this minor fact could not escape the vigilant eye of the global criminal, who seemed to know that we had no efficient criminal justice system to back it up. As for the constitution itself, its pious intentions notwithstanding, it has thus fallen short on group rights as it fails to protect the majority from criminals. Our human rights-based Constitution overnight transformed the notion of punishment for the crime into rehabilitation. Suddenly criminals were no longer to be viewed as the scum of society, deserving of retribution from authorities.We do not need a Constitution that balances the rights of murderers, robbers and rapists against those of their victims. We do not need a Constitution that takes care of the medical requirements of murderers, robbers and rapists while their injured victims are left to fend for themselves. We surely do not need a Constitution that has become a liability to our criminal justice system. Our great Constitution is a danger to society. Letepe Maisela - Sunday Times 22/04/2007

      Chumscrubber1 - 2012-07-12 06:26

      True, but it is essential prisoners that are at some stage going to be released are rehabilitated. Most are harder more dangerous criminals by the time they leave prison. I doubt much rehabilitation will be achieved, it requires effort, and there is not much of a culture of work effort left in our government run institutions.

      garren.dare - 2012-08-30 17:58

      so refreshing to read an objective, and incidentally 'spot-on',observation- clouded and influenced neither by political affilliation nor racial prejudice.

      garren.dare - 2012-08-30 18:12

      Again, can anyone mount an objective argument against chum.scrubber. It is a sad but true observation. One sees no sign of the will and effort that would be required.

  • gerhard.kress.3 - 2012-07-11 20:13

    Minister who must focus? This is your job!

  • BulletProof. - 2012-07-11 20:14

    The soft hand of our justice system again in action,educate them on the scools before they do crime. We will never go anyware like this.

  • Thato Okonkwo Fakudze - 2012-07-11 20:15

    Separation of State from Church? Yet the speech was delivered in church by a government official

  • logical007 - 2012-07-11 20:26

    I'm all for prisoners to be made to work usefully in society while in prison - build roads, fix pot holes, clean streets, (obviously under heavy police supervision) taught to make furniture, and other useful jobs, rather than sitting idle. But don't release them thinking they are rehabilitated because they say 'they won't do it again?' So many prisoners have been released, only to re-offend causing more trauma to another victim and that victims family.

      Thato Okonkwo Fakudze - 2012-07-11 20:29

      And so many have been escaping lately!

      logical007 - 2012-07-11 20:43

      @ Thato so true, no point in releasing them then??? lol!!! Until we have a non corrupt police force we can't use these prisoners to build roads, fix pot holes, clean streets, or we will have a blood massacre on hand!! What was I thinking??

      Chumscrubber1 - 2012-07-12 06:29

      We used to always see prison teams working in the old days. Work is a way to keep your mind off things, make the days go by quicker. But this regime finds work too cruel for a prisoner to have to do, it considers work the ultimate sin, not even a criminal should have to work. Shame.

      garren.dare - 2012-08-30 18:16

      yeah. saying "I'm sorry" is a highly over-rated cliche. Saying sorry is great- provided you try to right your wrong. Regrettably an apology in the ANC is tantamount to a sentence served , never mind the damage caused

  • Marco - 2012-07-12 08:19

    ah , some nice hot air on a cold day

  • nokuthandwa - 2012-07-12 08:30

    every sinner has a future - a future to sin again. SA criminals cannot be rehabilitated!

  • badballie - 2012-07-12 09:24

    Correctional Services Minister Sbu Ndebele, I challenge you to provide proof of the rehabilitation of even a single prisoner, and to give you a fair chance you can use international statistics. These statistics of course have no validity and the very concept of prisoner rehabilitation is based on misinformation and outright manipulation.

  • garren.dare - 2012-08-30 18:08

    The minister is 100% correct :rehabilitation should be the first objective in how a prisoner is handled. Of course there are those prisoners who cannot be rehabilitated , but the current system does nothing to dissuade other inmates that 1/crime does not pay or 2/ there is a future for a rehabilitated prisoner . All good and well, but what about the victim? If only the system assisted in rebuilding the victim's life as well!

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