Premature to question inmate rehabilitation

SINGAPORE - While the alleged stabbing of a prison officer by an inmate is most regrettable, we should not jump to conclusions or adopt knee-jerk reactions, especially when the full facts of the incident have not been made known yet ("Strike balance between security and rehabilitating inmates" by Ms Megan Chan; last Thursday).

Hence, to "wonder if the balance between security and rehabilitation has been compromised" would be premature.

To also suggest that "the SPS (Singapore Prison Service) must remember that it owes a duty to its partners... to ensure that convicts do their time and pay their dues for the crimes they have committed" seems to be a regression to the days when "an eye for an eye" was the guiding principle.

The SPS website states that Singapore prisons "must not be mere jailhouses, but transformational places, where strayed lives can be steered back on course".

This is a more appropriate duty for the SPS.

I hope the SPS continues with its current pursuit of rehabilitating inmates despite the alleged stabbing incident.

SPS officers, in their role as Captains of Lives and guided by the three principles of "rehab, renew and restart", should be encouraged.

- M. Lukshumayeh

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