By Thomas Domah, Nimba County
The superintendent for the central prison in Sanniqullie, Nimba County, Charles Mehn, is calling on government and international partners to construct rehabilitation centers for drug-addicted youth in the county.
Speaking on Monday, June 26, 2023, during celebration of World Drug Day in Nimba organized by a local group – Liberians United Youth For Community Safety and Development (LUYCSD) Superintendent Mehn said such facility will enable young people who are involved in drugs abuse to be rehabilitated and provided skills training so that they can become productive in society.
He disclosed that there is huge population of suspects and prisoners most of them, drug users, who need to be rehabilitated so they can return to the larger society.
He further revealed the Sanniquellie central prison was constructed for less than a hundred persons but currently hosts more than three hundred inmates.
Mr. Mehn noted that for Nimba County with a huge population and over 20 magisterial courts having a prison with a capacity for only 100 persons is responsible for the congestion.
He said if government in collaboration with partners could intervene by providing additional facilities, it will help in addressing the overpopulation of the central prison.
He blamed the overcrowdings on increase of drug users/dealers being sent to the facility.
Meanwhile, the keynote speaker for the occasion Patience N. Williams, called on Nimbaians, government, and international partners to support the fight against illicit drugs and trafficking in persons.
Ms Williams said increase in users of drugs has continued to destroy the youth of Liberia, who are future leaders.
She underscored a need for continuous engagement and support to combat drugs and human trafficking in the country.
For his part, the executive director for LUYCSD, Rev. Fred Suah, pledged his organization’s support to the fight against drug abuse and human trafficking. Editing by Jonathan Browne