The Interior Ministry has decided to separate female and juvenile male prisoners currently being held in the same facility at Phnom Penh’s Prey Sar Correctional Center 2, officials said Tuesday.
Heng Hak, director general of the ministry’s General Department of Prisons, said that CC2, which currently holds 323 female inmates and 402 juveniles, is currently overcrowded and unable to provide necessary services to its prisoners.
“We need to keep underage inmates in a good environment and big space and we need to think and take care of them for schooling,” he said. “We can’t organize the same vocational training for female and underage inmates. Therefore, we are planning and will be separating female and underage inmates,” he said.
It is still undecided which group will be removed from CC2, Mr Hak said, but whichever group moves will be held at prison facilities in Pursat province.
CC2 chief Chat Sineang said Tuesday that he had heard of the plans to separate the female and young male prisoners at his facility, but has not received any official announcement.
“If it can be separated, it will be best because female inmates need vocational training for a career, while underage inmates need a basic foundation in education,” he said.
As of Aug 10, there were a total of 12,577 prisoners, including 713 female inmates, being held in the country’s 24 prisons, according to Mr Hak. Of those, 8,592 have been convicted by the country’s courts, whereas 3,985 are being held in pre-trial detention.
Mr Hak said that the Council of Ministers in July approved an increase in food expenditures at all the country’s prisons from 1,500 riel per prisoner per day to 2,800 riel to offset the effects of inflation. The increase will be implemented starting in September, he added.
“The increase is due to the inflation that has made the prices of food increase,” he said.