REHABILITATION ENABLES NEW LIFE FOR CRIME OFFENDERS
By: Mbalenhle Zibani
The Klerksdorp Correctional Service has announced its 54% success on rehabilitation of criminals.
The Regional Commissioner of Matlosane District Mr Alfred Tsetsane said that the rehabilitation programme, done last week, was to ensure that crime offenders do not commit crime again, and the correctional service week was used to inform the public to accept offenders back to the community.
The Department of Correctional Services said that the campaign aimed at raising awareness and understanding of the work of the department in keeping South Africans safe.
Tsetsane also said that the community should give people a second chance because “prison isn’t a dustbin to rot offenders”.
“Yes it is difficult for the community to trust offenders but let’s not judge them by their past,” Tsetsane said.
Stofeel Mokoena, who is preparing for parole starting March next year, said that he is ready to go back to his community and believes that they know he has paid for his wrong doing.
“I know my community love and know me. I have worked for the community before,” he said.
Mokoena hopes his Public Management degree that he obtained in Klerksdorp Prison will help him assist other young people in his community. Klerksdorp Mayor Michael Khauoe emphasised that the victim-offender programme was misunderstood by many people.
He said that some offenders commit crime because of poverty and think crime is a solution, but rehab has taught them the wrongness of crime.
“They have learnt from their mistakes through facing consequences of their actions,” said Khauoe.
Officials running the rehabilitation programmes feel that offenders are made ready to go back to the community.
Special programmes that help offenders to deal with anger, aggression and individual frustrations have been made.
“Our officials are highly trained to deal with this kind of people,” said Tsetsane.
Mokoena encouraged other offenders to join rehabilitation programmes.