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More than 200 Gambians in prisons in Italy

May 23, 2016, 1:41 PM | Article By: Alagie Jinkang in Italy

The number of Gambians at different prisons in Italy has gone up to 212 of whom 210 are male and 2 female, information from the Italy Ministry of Justice has revealed.The prisoners are feared to be facing deportation.

The statistics, released on 30 April 2016, have stated that there are 18,074 foreign prisoners in Italy.

Other African nationals in the Italian prisons are Senegal 258, Egypt 44, Guinea 50, Niger 20, Sierra Leone 18, Sudan 35, Mali 1, and Cameron 15.

Our correspondent in Italy said the staggering number is not only a growing concern to nations of affected nationalities, but also for the host country, as the prisoners have to be given food, medicine, healthcare at the expense of the Italian government.

However, due to the present economic condition in Italy, it is feared that many of the basic needs of the prisoners are not attended to.

For Gambians, the number is too much, but what is even more challenging for them is access to justice.

Many have already been in jail for years as they know very little about the judicial procedure to seek freedom.

The Centre for Identification and Expulsion in Italy said it has “a staggering number of Gambians” undergoing the judicial procedures on whether or not to be deported.

Considering the fact that there are thousands of Gambians in Italy “illegally”, the number of Gambian detainees and prisoners could increase further, our correspondent said.