ONGWEDIVA - The Commissioner General of the Namibian Correctional Service (NCS) Raphael Hamunyela has encouraged his staff to foster good relations with the members of the Community Advisory Committee (CAC) to advance the work of the correctional facilities.
CAC was established at all correctional facilities across the country. Speaking at a meeting with the CAC at Oluno Correctional Facility, Hamunyela said CAC is crucial in each correctional facility, as it serves as impartial advisors to the facilities management, staff and offenders.
Through observation, the commissioner general said the committee has the responsibility to assess if offenders are getting the required services. “CAC are impartial observers of the correctional facilities day-to-day operations. They help assess if offenders are getting adequate care, supervision and services,” said Hamunyela.
The CAC members comprise members from all walks of life. In addition to contributing to the overall development of the correctional facilities and programmes, Hamunyela said the committee also promote public knowledge and understanding through communications with all at the facilities.
The CAC is also tasked with the responsibility of fostering public participation in the correctional service and encouraged the members to be the ears and eyes of the facilities in the communities. He stressed that the committee should listen to the public concerns and offer the facility with the community views and perceptions of the impact of the policies, programmes and services in place.
“They also help raise awareness on corrections and promote the important work that the NCS undertakes and encourage citizens to get involved,” said the commissioner general. In the same vein, the commissioner general advised the committee to visit the facilities and convene meetings with the staff and offenders.
“This should result in the establishment of clear objectives, which should be updated annually, in collaboration with the Officer in Charge, to assist the facility in dealing with the challenges it faces – be it material needs or helping offenders mend family relations,” said Hamunyela