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By Dale AndrewsHead of the Guyana Human Rights Association, Mike Mc Cormack, is convinced that the health situation in the Georgetown Prison is unacceptable. He is urging the Ministry of Home Affairs to take steps to rectify the matter.Speaking to Kaieteur News in the wake of statements made by death row inmates at the main penal institution with regards to their health, the GHRA head said that the situation is unacceptable. There is an urgent need for the beefing up of health personnel within the prison.Mc Cormack pointed to the prevalence of diseases such as tuberculosis in most prison societies. This, he said, needs constant monitoring by professional medical personnel.He also cited outbreaks of chicken pox which at times got out of control within the prison.Mc Cormack’s comments were in direct reference to complaints by several prisoners about the lack of proper medical treatment.The prisoners, some of whom have terminal illnesses, complained of being given the cold shoulder by prison authorities when questions were posed.This newspaper understands that within recent times, at least four death row inmates have died in prison of various illnesses reportedly as a result of lack of medical attention.Joseph Craig died of tuberculosis after suffering for months while on Death Row.Manzoor Alli was another death row inmate who succumbed to his diabetes allegedly because of the callousness of prison officials.“This man actually beg them to carry him to the hospital. He beg them from Sunday till de Thursday when he died and they never carry he fuh treatment although he de vomiting blood,Cheap NFL Jerseys,” an inmate on Death Row told this newspaper.Paulo Rampersaud,Wholesale Jerseys From China, another condemned prisoner, who was also diabetic, succumbed after repeatedly beseeching prison officials to take him for proper medical attention.“Health should be given high priority,” the GHRA Head told this newspaper.“If prisoners are maintained at a proper level, it will be less costly on the government,” added Mc Cormack, who also stressed that Guyana is a signatory to the United Nations minimum standard treatment of prisoners guideline.The GHRA head also commented on the prisoners’ concern over the meals they are served at the Camp Street facility.While Minister of Home Affairs, Clement Rohee, had indicated that prisoners’ facilities are no five-star hotels,NFL Jerseys China, the inmates at the Georgetown Prisons have said that their meals leave a lot to be desired.McCormack reasoned that the low level of food served in the prison may be a direct result of the overcrowded prison population.He lashed out at judicial functionaries who appear to have a penchant for remanding accused persons at will.According to the GHRA official,Wholesale NFL Jerseys, since the prison population may be two times what is budgeted for, it puts a strain on the administration of the Guyana Prison Service.“In the United States of America, if the (prison) budget is not adequate, the (prison) authorities release prisoners and this gets the attention of those responsible. But this cannot happen in Guyana,” Mc Cormack stated.“This situation is no fault of the prison authorities; they have no control over that situation,” he added.With regards to the delay in the hearing of appeals of condemned prisoners,NFL Jerseys China, McCormack told this newspaper that it is an issue that his organization will raise with the Guyana Bar Association when the two sides meet soon.He said that the GHRA will stress the need to have the typing of the records of high court cases completed in a timely manner.A senior functionary of the judiciary had told this newspaper that this exercise should not take more than a few months.Several Death Row prisoners who have filed notices of appealing their convictions have been waiting for as long as five years to have their matters heard by the Court of Appeal.They are fearful that the treatment meted out to them could see their sentences being unofficially carried out even before their appeals are heard.According to the GHRA head, while the local human rights body has an interest in the welfare of prisoners,Camo China NFL Jerseys, the body no longer has a presence on the prison visiting committee.He said that the GHRA pulled out of the committee because of what he described as political issues, citing the frequent interventions of Government functionaries in relation to their work which he said should be impartial.
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