By Fatou Saho
SK Jaiteh and Sons Limited, a business group that deals with second hand clothing in The Gambia, has recently donated goods worth of D74, 000 to the Gambia Prison Services.
The items were three bales of blankets amounting to D30, 000, one bale of T-shirts for D8, 000, two bales of jeans pants D16, 000 and medicines worth D20, 000.
The founder and chief executive officer, Salifu K. Jaiteh, mentioned his desire to continuously support the efforts of the prison services as part of complementing government’s efforts.
In a moving speech, Mr Jaiteh counselled families whose relatives are in prison and urged them to exercise patience.
“Prison is not a bad place; Nelson Mandela has served 27 years in prison and now his statue is in the centre of Europe. We have seen prisoners who have become imams after being freed, we have seen aggressive people who transformed to calmness when they leave the prison. They are our people and we have to help them”, Jaiteh emphasised.
Explaining the reason they chose to donate to the prisons, Mr Jaiteh stated: “There are lots of sicknesses now and some sicknesses are renewed in the cold season. Everybody is prone to illness and the inmates are not exempted. That being the case, we deem it necessary to support them with medicines and blankets to keep themselves warm and get treated with the medicines as per their health statues. We also realized that some prisoners are without uniforms and they don’t have proper clothing, that is why we decided to include jeans and T-shirts in our list”.
Lamin Sowe, the commissioner of operations at the Gambia Prison Services Mile II, expressed gratitude to SK Jaiteh and Sons LTD for coming to their aid as he said that the items arrived right in time, emphasising the need for other Gambians to emulate Mr Jaiteh by considering the prison service.
“We are not better than the prisoners and they are not better than us,” Commissioner Sowe stated.
He noted that the items will go a long way in their quest to reform the prisons.