It is sometimes very disheartening the kind of circumstances people fond themselves in. It may appear as mere stories but those are the realities of some people in the communities we find ourselves. For many years now, people have been speaking against custodial sentencing for minor offenders but it appears nothing is being done about it. Minor offenders end up imprisoned and the state ends up feeding and accommodating them to increase government expenditure and deepen the woes of the poor individuals involved. The sad part is, they get out unrefined and become a burden on society because of the poor prison system in this country.
It is very sad for someone as young as 34 years with 3 children and no husband to go through this experience.
Madam Akua Akyaa, a resident of the Bosomtwe District in the Ashanti region is, unfortunately, wallowing in jail because he stole five (5) Ghana cedis to feed her three (3) children.
Narrating her ordeal to Crime Check TV, she indicated that, she used to help a chop bar operator in her community of which she was paid 5 cedis after work every day. One day, the owner of the chop bar informed her the daughter has returned from school and would be helping her and so Akua Akyaa could not be helping for the time being. This rendered her jobless and the 5 cedis she and her three children depended on every evening therefore not forthcoming. Regardless, they had to survive and so she saw an amount of 2 cedis on a neighbor’s couch, took it, and bought some rice balls for the children to eat.
Suspecting her, the neighbor started insulting her and it ended in a brawl during which she saw a blade and cut the shoulder of the neighbor who was overpowering her at that point.
The matter was reported to the police and she was taken to court and sentenced to 2 months imprisonment. She reiterated the length of the sentence was short because the judge indicated that she felt sad for her. Initially, she was fined and it was after she failed to honor the fine that she was sent to jail.
Luckily for her, Madam Barikisu, a Ghanaian resident in the United States, has through Crime Check TV offered to pay the fine and she has been released from jail to be with her 3 children. She was overjoyed and expressed her sincere gratitude for the kind gesture.
I think as a country, we must do something about custodial sentencing.