In light of the recent unrest earlier this month at the Georgetown Prison during which 17 inmates were killed and several others as well as prison officials injured, the British Government has indicated its willingness to aid Guyana in reforming its prison system.
This offer was indicated by British High Commissioner to Guyana, Greg Quinn, who told reporters on Tuesday that the United Kingdom is reviewing the Security Sector Reform (SSR) Programme to find ways it can assist the Guyanese Government in strengthening the prison system.
“I have had recent discussions on prisons subsequent to the deaths and the riot. I expect that the action plan on security sector reform and what we do going forward to be completed by the end of April, and then we will look at putting in place the various recommendations which I know the Commission will come up with,” the High Commissioner related.
Last year, the British diplomat had announced that his Government would be conducting an assessment in Guyana with the aim of reviving the SSR Programme. He explained that because the SSR Programme was designed some nine years ago, things have significantly changed over the years, so the first step of the process would be for the British Government to undertake an assessment mission.
“(The assessment) will look at the whole security sector again and they will come up with a new plan and we will go from there. We are hoping that that needs assessment mission will come out the first quarter of next year,” Quinn had stated.
The needs assessment report was scheduled to be completed during the first quarter of this year.