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New prison chief expected this month

A new commissioner of corrections will be appointed within the next month, Minister of National Security Marvin Dames said yesterday.

“We have an acting commissioner, and within the next maybe few weeks… certainly this month we will be announcing the new commissioner, and having a proper handing-over ceremony,” Dames said.

“Then we will be working on the proper support team, the executive team, which I’m hoping will be a combination of young, up-and-coming, educated officers to work with, because this is also a career-development succession planning focus that we’re bringing to it that will form that nucleus that will move this prison in the direction which we’re seeking to go.”

Charles Murphy, who previously headed the Maximum Security Unit, has been acting commissioner of corrections since last year, when Patrick Wright retired.

Last year, the government began an international search for someone to fill the position.

In January, Dames said that eight Bahamian applicants had been shortlisted.

This comes in the midst of a wider effort to modernize the Bahamas Department of Corrections (BDOC).

Formerly known as Her Majesty’s Prison, the Fox Hill facility underwent a name change in order to reflect the ongoing transformation of the institution from a penal institution to a correctional one.

The government signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Correction Services Canada to assist in the transformation.

Speaking yesterday on the MOU, Dames said, “It allows us to tap into the expertise within Canada and to work with them in the transformation process, and that’s everything from case management or inmate management process to preparing our officers for this transition, and so officers at every level have been receiving training in Canada, as well as in New Providence.”

Staff Reporter at The Nassau Guardian
Rachel joined The Nassau Guardian in January 2019. Rachel covers national issues.
Education: Virginia in Charlottesville, BA in Foreign Affairs and Spanish
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