The Ghana Prisons Service is on the verge of introducing university education programmes to qualified inmates who want to improve academically.
According to the head of public relations for the prison service, Superintendent Vitalis Ayeh, three Ghanaian universities have been invited to extend their distance learning programmes to inmates, local Ghanaian news portal GhanaWeb reported.
“We are in talks with the Universities of Ghana, Cape Coast, and [Education], Winneba to extend their services to the Prisons Service of Ghana so that these inmates who have qualified to enter university but because they are serving in the prison and cannot go to the university [can profit],” Superintendent Vitalis Ayeh said.
“They can benefit from the distance education system and they can come out better off,” he added, saying the talks with the universities are at an advanced stage.
The prisons in Ghana have ongoing educational programmes including technical and vocational training, Information and Communication Technology as well as primary and secondary school education.
If an agreement is reached, it will be the first university education programme at the overcrowded prisons in Ghana.
According to a 2016 Ghana Prisons Service statistics, the country has a total inmate population of 13,685, filling 43 prisons built to hold 9,875 inmates.
Last year, the Chairman of the Ghana Prisons Service Council, Rev Dr Stephen Yenusom Wengam, called for both state and private support to transform the state of prisons in the country.