Police are coming under fire for not yet updating the public on exactly how many prisoners are roaming free, following the massive unrest at the Camp Street penitentiary which resulted in that facility turning to nothing but ashes.
Officials had initially disclosed that five inmates are at large but two days after, authorities still appear to be ‘helter-skelter’ on the issue.
For one, police keeps announcing that they have recaptured prisoners the public did not even know had escaped. These include Shamudeen Mohamed and Shawn Collins.
Police sources said Mohamed, who is a murder accused, was recaptured at his parent’s home while his mother was also arrested. The public only knew about his escape until after he was recaptured.
Police also said Collins, 20, of Lot 6 Ketley and Drydales Streets escaped whilst being transported with other prisoners to the Lusignan Prison on Sunday night. Again, the public only learnt of his escaped after he was recaptured by police on Monday.
Questions are now being asked about how many prisoners have escaped and when will the public know for sure.
Additionally, police had issued wanted bulletins for four of the five initially announced escapees but subsequently retracted one because they realized it was an error.
“The Guyana Police Force wishes to make a retraction in relation to murder accused Sherwin Nero a/k Sherwin Moses c/d Catty whom a wanted bulletin was issued for earlier today. The prisoner was positively identified and accounted for by a Senior Prison Official,” the Police public relations officer said yesterday.
Authorities seem to be having a challenging time identifying the prisoners they have and accounting for them.
According to the Head of the Department of Public Information Imran Khan, “When the roll call is done many of the prisoners are refusing to identify themselves making identification of all the prisoners extremely difficult.”
He noted too that, “It is also being suggested that some of the prisoners are being deliberately uncooperative so as to delay the identification of all the escapees for as long as possible in an effort to aid the escapees in their efforts to remain unidentified.”
Police sources are quoted in another section of the media saying that authorities are having a hard time accounting for nine prisoners.
While authorities are only assuring that all efforts are being exhausted, the public is growing anxious over the lack of information on actual facts.
Yesterday, approximately 300 of the 1018 prisoners who were said to be at Camp Street were transported from the temporary holding facility at Lusignan to other prisons across the country. Some 22 inmates were released on bail.
A statement from the Ministry of the Presidency said temporary structures to the tune of $18M will be constructed at Lusignan to hold the remaining inmates. More prisoners are also expected to be released on bail today.