| Rokiah Mahmud |
THE Prisons Department yesterday inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Annur Harapan for the Annur Initiative Incubator Project.
Held at Jerudong Prison, the signing saw Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Home Affairs Haji Mohammad ‘Abdoh bin Dato Seri Setia Haji Abdul Salam as guest of honour.
Signing on behalf of the department was its Acting Director Haji Ismail bin Haji Murat, while Annur Harapan was represented by its Chief Executive Officer Dato Paduka Awang Haji Abdul Rahman bin Haji Mohiddin.
In his speech, the Prisons Department Acting Director explained the MoU is part of continuous efforts in realising the department’s vision and mission of improving the quality of its rehabilitation service programmes, ensuring they are effective, organised and coordinated.
Aside from rehabilitation and supervision programmes, the department has also implemented several other ‘Evidence-Based’ and ‘Best Practices’ programmes for the inmates, such as Basic Computer Introduction, memorising Al-Quran and an academic enhancement programme in cooperation with Yayasan Sultan Haji Hassanal Bolkiah and Higher Education Section of the Ministry of Education.
“Under the academic enhancement programme, out of 13 inmates who sat for four subjects in their ‘O’ Level examination, two of them scored four O’s, three scored three O’s, three others got two O’s, and five scored one O’s.
“In learning the importance of rehabilitation programmes for the inmates, the Prisons Department has taken the initiative of setting up the Counselling and Supervision Services as an aftercare programme. It is designed specifically for inmates who have completed their sentences, but still require support and guidance to be integrated back into society.
“Since the establishment of the services, 144 former inmates (otherwise known as friends under supervision) have voluntarily registered into the programme. However, of the registered numbers, only 40 followed the programme. Some of them have been taken on to work in the private sector and at car workshops, while some others have managed to open up their own business,” he said.
Meanwhile, Annur Harapan Board of Trustee Chairman Pengiran Haji Salleh Ab Rahaman bin Pengiran Haji Damit said in a speech the financial provision for the Annur Initiative Incubator Project was allocated through initiatives of charitable projects and programmes of Her Royal Highness Paduka Seri Pengiran Anak Isteri Pengiran Anak Sarah. The contribution was channelled through Annur Harapan.
“The Annur Initiative Incubator Project is one of the activities executed by Annur Harapan in hopes that it will contribute towards self-development, especially for those in need of assistance and guidance,” he said.
With the setting up of the incubator project, which is based on entrepreneurship concept, it is hoped friends under supervision would be able to earn their own income, he added.
As a start, the incubator project will be offering car wash and grass-cutting services.
Following the ceremony, the guest of honour launched the Annur Initiative Incubator Project, before receiving a mock key from the Chairman of the Board of Trustee of Annur Harapan.
The guests of honour and guests were later invited to take a closer look at the facilities and services provided at the incubator site.