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Almost two million prisoners released over the last decade, says Home Ministry

KUALA LUMPUR: Nearly two million prisoners have been released in Malaysia over the last decade, says Deputy Home Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Mohamed Said.

“Prisons Department records from 2011 till Oct 1 this year showed there were 1,940,579 prisoners released,” he said during Question Time in the Dewan Rakyat on Tuesday (Nov 23).

Ismail was responding to V. Sivakumar (PH-Batu Gajah), who asked for figures on prisoners released in Malaysia from 2011 till 2021 and the steps taken by the government to ensure they can be reintegrated with society.

Ismail said there were a number of initiatives by the Prisons Department for that purpose, including certified skills programmes held in collaboration with the Labour Department and Human Resources Ministry.

He said the programmes involved training prisoners to produce woven products, frozen foods, kuih, furniture, wood carvings and various other skill-based items.

“Skills in these areas can help a prisoner find employment in a suitable sector once he has completed his sentence,” he added.

To ensure former prisoners integrate well with society, Ismail said the Home Ministry and Prisons Department had introduced the Corporate Smart Internship Programme, a collaboration with private entities to allow those under parole to be employed.

Ismail also said the companies currently collaborating with the Prisons Department included Panasonic, Boustead Berhad, Tradewinds Corporation Berhad, Felda, Felcra and Mamee.

“The Home Ministry has also implemented many skills training and rehabilitation programmes for inmates within and outside prison to ensure that (upon release) they will have the ability to support themselves without being discriminated against,” he added.

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