The Management of Crime Check Foundation (CCF), a Prison Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has presented a citation to Christian Atsu, the Black Stars and Newcastle midfielder, for his humanitarian support.
Through CCF's Petty Offenders Project, Atsu has paid for the release of 53 Petty Offenders with court fines imposed on them and jailed.
Mr. Ibrahim Oppong Kwarteng, the Executive Director of CCF presenting the Citation said: "this is in honour and acknowledgment of your contributions to the release of fifty-three petty offenders in Ghana's Prisons."
The Citation said "you have not only paid court fines of poor and voiceless petty offenders but also advocate reforms in Ghana's criminal justice system”.
" You have gone a step further to ensure that inmates, who are released have financial support to enable them reintegrate successfully into society," it added.
The Citation indicated that "by your commitment to supporting poor and voiceless prisoners and ex-convicts, you have demonstrated to the world, the need to bridge the gap between the rich and the poor through the power of Sports."
It said, by being the single donor to the Petty Offenders Project, many prisoners, ex-convicts, whose rights have been abused and their families could not live in happiness and dignity, have been restored.
Receiving the award, Atsu pledged to further support those released with skills training and financial assistance to enable them re-integrate successfully into society.
“There is the need to support them to prevent the situation, where they go back to re-offend society because of poverty,” he said.
He commended Management and Staff of CCF for its crime prevention campaign and its support for prisoners in Ghana.
He urged philanthropists and other well-meaning Ghanaians to support the work of the Foundation to enable the poor and the voiceless have access to justice.
Meanwhile, the Newcastle midfielder, has presented a cheque of GH₵3,000 to Management of Awutu Camp prison to upgrade the prison pitch.
The cheque, presented on behalf of the midfielder by Mr Kwarteng, said it was in response to a request by the Officer-in-Charge of the prison, Mr William Thomas Anaman to upgrade the pitch to enable inmates engage in sporting activities.
Receiving the cheque, Mr. Anaman expressed gratitude to Mr. Atsu for the quick response to the plea of the inmates.
“Our pitch is the only recreational facility for the inmates, but for a very long time, we have not been able to use it because of its bad nature. The inmates will be more than happy now,” he added.