23 Mar 2012

New Zealand government consulting Vanuatu government on prison

1:50 pm on 23 March 2012

The New Zealand government says in light of delays with the planned building of a new national prison in Vanuatu, it is consulting the Vanuatu government on how best to achieve safe, secure and humane facilities for prisoners in Port Vila.

In a statement a Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson says New Zealand remains committed to achieving that goal in partnership with the Vanuatu government.

The statement comes as Vanuatu's justice minister says his government is awaiting a decision from New Zealand as to whether it will fund the building of a new prison.

Charlot Salwai says the Vanuatu government wants to build a new faciltity at Erangorango but the New Zealand government favours rehabilitating the existing Stade prison.

Mr Salwai says his government wants to move prison facilities away from the capital.