By Chris Mahandara – Kna Kisumu
The Kenya Prisons Service (KPS) has notified individuals irregularly occupying prisons land to vacate.
The Commissioner General of Prisons Service Wycliffe Ogalo said no effort shall be spared until all grabbed prisons land is repossessed.
“We are going all out to get our land back and we shall not treat those illegally occupying it with kid gloves,” he warned.
Speaking at Kodiaga Maximum Prison in Kisumu on Thursday, Ogalo asked them to voluntarily hand over the land back to the service before action is taken.
The land, he said was essential to pave way for expansion of correctional facilities and enhance service delivery.
The Commissioner General opened 36 new housing units for Prisons Officers at Kodiaga, and noted that more resources shall be allocated to erect more units to ensure that the officers have decent housing.
Even though the government directed the officers to rent houses after starting to pay them house allowances, a number of them, he said were unable to secure decent accommodation.
“We want our officers to stay in secure and decent houses befitting the good work that they do,” he said.
He added that the Kenya Prisons Service was in the process of reviewing the working conditions of prison wardresses and other members of staff to ensure that they were promoted to motivate them.
“We know there are officers who have stagnated for many years and we are going to ensure that they get their promotions in time,” he assured.
The Kenya Prison Service, he said, was determined to improve the conditions of all the correctional facilities in the country.
On security within the correctional facilities, Ogalo said KPS had taken a multi-agency approach to curb escalation of criminal activities.
He pointed out the use of mobile phones by inmates to harass and con unsuspecting Kenyans as some of the activities to be nipped on the bud, adding that a crackdown on those involved in the syndicate was ongoing.
“We understand that some of these criminals collude with our officers and this is something we are pursuing jointly with other state agencies to ensure that the vice is completely eradicated,” he said.