The Solomon Islands Ombudsman, Mr. Fred Fakarii, and delegation have taken a whole day on Wednesday 3rd October to visit the Rove Correctional Headquarter and Center.
The visit started with an inspection of Guard of Honour accorded to the Ombudsman by the Correctional Service of Solomon Islands (CSSI) at their Headquarter in Rove. The Ombudsman and delegation then proceed to visit and inspect the different departments within the Rove Correctional Center as well as the different blocks where prison inmates are accommodated.
The visit was made as part of the mandate given to the Ombudsman under Section 97 (1) & (3) of the Constitution that includes the Prison Services in Solomon Islands. Also, the visit is conducted in accordance to Section 26 of the Correctional Services Act 2007, which highlighted that the Ombudsman and any person authorized in writing by him, may enter and inspect a correctional center at any time, and may exercise any of the powers prescribed for visiting justices. Further to that, one of the functions of the Ombudsman is to listen to grievances from citizens and this includes the prison inmates as well.
The Ombudsman highlighted during his opening remarks that the visit is very important as it will enable his Office to fully understand the challenges faced by Correctional Services Officers in carrying out their mandated roles in looking after prison inmates. “Such challenges are numerous and daunting at times, some are urgent and needs responsible stakeholders to urgently address while others requires creativity and innovation to deal with”, stated the Ombudsman.
After the day long visit, the Ombudsman was pleased with the high level of professionalism shown by the Correctional Services Officers. “This, I must commend you all including your leadership for a job well done’, said the Ombudsman.