Written by Leonard Wamalwa
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Vice president Kalonzo Musyoka has called upon the judiciary to fasten the rulings of cases facing remand prisoners across the country so that justice can be administered within the shortest time and avoid congestions in prisons.
Speaking at the Kitale Main Prison, the VP said that there should be no unnecessary delays in cases and warned that judges found delaying cases without concrete reasons shall be fired.
"We want to work closely with the judiciary to ensure that cases are not delayed unnecessarily because as one judge in England said, 'Justice delayed is justice denied' so we do not want to see remandees suffer in prisons because of delays in ruling their cases”, he said.
He added that the government shall soon increase the number of judges in the country's courts so that those facing charges get to know their fate because there are some who might be on prisons yet they are innocent.
Kalonzo at the same time appreciated the judicial changes that are going on under the leadership of Chief Justice Willy Mutunga especially the vetting of judges which he said is a good thing because it is now evident that the wheels of justice are taking course.
Kalonzo dancing along with some women inmates during his visit at the Kitale Main Prison [PHOTO|Leonard Wamalwa|West Fm]
However, the vice president who was accompanied by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs Lodeki Chweya, Mp Mohammed Affey and former Makadara MP Dick Wathika at the same time urged the society to be ready to receive the convicts on completion of their jail terms.
He said that the prisons which are Correctional Institutions and are committed in changing the behaviors of the convicts and thus the society should always be ready and willing to rejoin them back in the society.
"Our intention is not to keep you here for 150 years but it is majorly to correct you and therefore what we want to call upon all Kenyans out there is that when you go back there to rejoin your husbands, wives or children, we do not want to here cases of the public charging you once again," he told the prisoners and remandees inside the prison.
The VP who is on a tour in Trans Nzoia County reiterated the continuation of reforms in the prisons that have seen the welfare of the Prisons Officers and the prisoners improve a great deal.
Kitale Prison Command has four units including the Kitale Main prison, Kitale Medium, Kitale Annex and Kitale women prison that have a cumulative 1457 prisoners with 626 staff members.
However according to the Rift Valley Prisons Commissioner, the facility that was set up during colonial era needs a lot of refurbishment due to the ancient and insufficient structures that have not been expanded and improved to match the increasing number of inmates.
The commissioner also cited the diminishing size of land that has reduced to 300 acres from its original 3000 acres to what he termed allocations that he did specify as one of the major challenges facing the four Correctional Institutions in the area.
Kalonzo is later on expected to address a Public Political Rally at the Kenyatta Stadium in Kitale Town where he is to popularize his Wiper Democratic Party as he enhances his presidential bid to succeed president Kibaki on retirement next year.
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