President Mohamed Nasheed has formed an office to oversee the release of almost 400 inmates released under the “second chance programme”, and has also formed a steering committee and a technical committee to monitor the reintegration of former inmates into society.
According to the President’s Office, the Second Chance Office will be administered by the Department of Penitentiary and Rehabilitation Services (DPRS), which is under direct authority of the Ministry of Home Affairs
“The Second Chance Programme Office is a government agency which will provide employment assistance, counselling for substance abuse, mentoring and other services that can help to reduce recidivism and promote social reintegration of inmates,” the President’s Office said.
The Steering Committee consists of Minister of Health and Family Dr Aminath Jameel, Minister of Human Resources, Youth and Sports Hassan Latheef, Minister of State for Home Affairs Mohamed Naeem, Deputy Minister for Health and Family Lubna Mohamed Zahir Hussain, and Director at the Ministry of Human Resources, Youth and Sports Aishath Rasheed.
The members appointed to the Technical Committee are the Mayor of Male’ City Maizan Ali Maniku, Deputy Minister of Islamic Affairs Mohamed Farooq, Deputy Commissioner of Police Ahmed Muneer, and Deputy Director at the Maldives Police Service Sabra Nooraddeen.
At a press conference today, Deputy Health Minister Lubna Mohamed announced that 47 inmates will be released this evening.
Lubna told press that all inmates will be given three days free to spend with their families before they will have to come out for work and attend programmes held at the Second Chance Office.
Of the 47 inmates to be released tonight, 16 have job placements secured at the Maldives National Defence Force (MNDF) engineering corps, Lubna said.
Speaking at the press conference, State Minister for Home Affairs Mohamed Naeem stressed that all the inmates will be closely monitored by police.
He added that any inmate that fails to fully comply with the Second Chance Office will be promptly sent back to prison to complete the rest of their sentence.