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File picture: Prisoners at Remand Yard, Golden Grove Prison, Arouca.

Over 100 additional inmates at the Golden Grove Remand Yard have been swabbed for testing for COVID-19.

This was confirmed by acting Commissioner of Prisons, Dennis Pulchan during an interview with the Guardian Media yesterday.

Over the past two weeks several videos have been posted to social media by inmates both at the Golden Grove Remand Yard Prison and the Maximum Security Prison (MSP) in Arouca.

The inmates alleged that they were being fed late, that they were being deliberately transferred to sections where COVID-19 positive inmates were being housed.

One of the videos shows a group of inmates who are housed in the Golden Grove Remand Yard Prison alleging that they were removed from a space at MSP to accommodate 68 COVID-19 positive inmates for a period of 14 days.

Pulchan said 141 prisoners at the Golden Grove Remand yard were swabbed by medical officials who were invited into the prison for the exercise yesterday.

“All of them who would have posted the videos and who were seen in the videos were also swabbed additionally to the 141,” he said.

Pulchan assured that “the temporary measure was done in order to protect inmates and staff at MSP.”

“The inmates at Golden Grove Prison are kept in quarantine and medically checked daily by infirmary officers to ensure their health and well being,” Pulchan said.

“Everything is being done to ensure that they get the best health care. One must remember that they are in prison as punishment and accommodations are limited. The prison manages a total of approximately 3,700 inmates daily and has to ensure their safety,” he added.

Last week 222 inmates and 12 officers were swabbed for testing. To date 68 positive results have since been received.