President Wavel Ramkalawan was the guest of honour at the official opening of the workshop on Parole and Pardon – Developing a Parole and Pardon system for Seychelles, held at the International Conference Centre Seychelles (ICCS) this morning.
The workshop is being hosted by the Advisory Committee on the Power of Pardon under the guided theme “Parole and Pardon System for Seychelles” with the participation of local entities.
During his welcome and introductory remarks, the Chairperson for ACPP, Mr. Jude Fred noted that the only guidance for the Pardon and Parole is Article 60 of the Constitution and that there is no legislative framework to guide the work of the advisory committee.
“This is seen as inadequate given the modern and present circumstances which require clearly defined criteria for selection of offenders and for recommending parole and pardon. Furthermore, advice or recommendation or parole requires the committee to be confident that the applicant is capable and able to reintegrate into society without being a threat to the public.
At this juncture, it is important to reiterate that social reintegration is seen as the most challenging aspects of a proper rehabilitation progamme leading to effective reintegration and as such must be in place in order for the system to satisfy that the recommending Parole or Pardon is in the interest of safeguarding society,” said Mr. Fred.
He continued, “Today, we will be making hard choices; we will be paving the way of the future which can have severe impact on offenders and their family, victims and their families and the society as a whole. We must be diligent. We must be conscious of the legal criminal social and economic consequences of the decisions we make today.”
During the opening ceremony, there were presentations by the Leader of Government Business in the National Assembly, Honourable Bernard Georges and Mr. Benjamin Vel geared towards looking at the present situation, research made, and the challenges that will lead towards proposing a functional and effective system.
The ceremony was also attended by the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, Mr. Rony Govinden, the Minister for Local Government and Community Affairs, Mrs. Rose Marie Hoareau, Chairperson of the Human Rights Commission, Justice Bernardin Renaud, participants from various government entities and other distinguished guests.
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of State House – Office of the President of the Republic of Seychelles.