Naitasiri Provincial Council meeting.
Eighty-six inmates under the care of Fiji Corrections Service are from the Naitasiri province.
While this is a drop when compared to previous years, Director Rehabilitation, Waisea Soqonakalou says 42 of them were convicted of rape and domestic violence related offences, an issue prevalent in many provinces.
While speaking to the district representatives at the Naitasiri Provincial Council meeting, Soqonakalou says three out of the 86 inmates are over the age of 70 and were convicted of rape.
“If you ask what these elders did, they did moral offences which involves our girls and women. This is something that is happening in our communities today.”
Soqonakalou urged these leaders to accept the inmates back in the community once they are released from the Corrections Center.
“They are people of our province, let’s not overlook them. We should give them a second chance because while serving their time at the Corrections Center, they change and try to become a better person.”
Naitasiri Provincial Council Chair, Timoci Ratuva has assured to work together to look at ways to further reduce the number of offenders from their province.
Ratuva has also requested the Council to identify those who can make up the Naitasiri Care Network Committee to help the province.
The Fiji Corrections Service has programs and courses in place to prepare inmates so they can find better jobs and re-start their lives after serving their term.