13 granted bail in Tamale under Justice For All

Thirteen remand prisoners were today granted bail at the Tamale Central prisons by judges of the Justice for All Program.

A number of these inmates had been on remand for varying number of years.

Some had been kept in custody for five, seven and others eight years without bail.

Those granted bail today include some of the inmates featured in JoyNews’ documentary “Locked and Forgotten.

The documentary exposed the dehumanizing conditions under which especially remand prisoners live.

The Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood has since reactivated the Justice for All Program as a way of dealing with the issues raised in the documentary.

So far about 41 inmates from Nsawam and Koforidua prisons have been discharged.

High Court judge Justice Constance Hometowu who supervised proceedings today at the Tamale prisons told Joy News they are poised to do everything possible to depopulate the congestion in the prisons.

“Some of them are walking home, 13 of them have been granted bail, five have been denied bail and also the bail condition for one has been varied,”

He said those who pleaded to the court to vary their bail conditions had the court listening to them.

“The point is that bail must not be used as punishment,” he added.

He said he would be organising a workshop for all circuit court judges in the Upper East and West Region to reassess the crimes for which people are granted bail.

The Principal state attorney in charge of the Northern Region Salia Abdul-Quddus said the public should not blame them for the many years they spend prosecuting the cases of remand prisoners.

He said their major challenge has been getting witnesses to appear in court to testify.

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