Deputy Minister of Justice Emil Dechev inspected on the spot the activities on the construction of the new prison and training centre in Samoranovo.
The most ambitious project of the Ministry of Justice and the General Directorate for the Execution of Punishments (GDEP) has a deadline of April next year. The penitentiary complex includes a pilot prison with a capacity of up to 400 inmates and a training centre for 100 GDEP officers. The conceptual design also envisages the construction of a so-called "prison of the future". The idea also includes a "transition ward", which is a modern concept for preparing people who are about to be released from prison for their return to society. A social centre is also envisaged which will provide an opportunity for public institutions, NGOs and civil society to participate in initiatives aimed at better integration and social inclusion of prisoners. Production workshops are also being built where prisoners will have the opportunity to participate in work activities.
The construction works are progressing according to schedule, and on the ground the Deputy Minister in charge and the Director General of the GDEP, Chief Commissioner Ivaylo Yordanov, received the assurance from the manager of the contractor company that the deadline will be met. Around 150 workers are involved on the site on a daily basis, with construction activities running in parallel on the planned buildings of the complex. "I am impressed with the pace at which work is being carried out," Deputy Minister Dechev said.
The funding is under the Norwegian Financial Mechanism 2014-2021, the Justice Programme's project "Increasing staff capacity, building a pilot prison linked to a training centre and improving inmate rehabilitation".
The investment plan of the GDEP foresees the construction of a state-of-the-art facility meeting European standards, including security and safety systems.