Gobabis prison boasts hydroponics project

10 February 2020 | Local News

The Gobabis Correctional Facility hydroponic project, which will aid in the rehabilitation of inmates, was officially inaugurated last week.

Through the project, 15 offenders and five correctional officers were trained in hydroponics – the growing of plants in a water based, nutrient rich solution instead of in soil - by the World Food Programme (WFP).

The project is supported by the WFP in collaboration with the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Speaking during the inauguration ceremony, UNODC programme management officer Alejandro Matta said the skills acquired will also assist inmates to effectively reintegrate into the community upon their release.

“A critical component of the programme is fully dedicated to supporting member states to create fair, humane and effective criminal justice systems, thereby fostering the rehabilitation and social integration of prisoners,” he said.

Skills

Matta said the project not only generates new skills among the prison population but also contributes to their nutrition and that of the community at large, as part of the harvest will be sold to residents of the town to generate income and maintain the project.

“Through this project, we are also actively contributing to achieving the goal on ending hunger,” he said.

The Namibian Correctional Service commissioner-general, Raphael Hamunyela, lauded the UNODC and WFP for supporting the project, saying he has no doubt that the project will become the main vegetable supplier especially for soup kitchens in and around Gobabis.

Omaheke governor Festus Ueitele said the project came at the right time as Namibia is in need of innovative ideas to produce food while imparting skills to maintain a culture of hard work that will enable the nation to be self- dependent. - Nampa

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