Hundreds of prisoners who are currently serving jail terms for minor offences have been freed under ‘Fak Khorba’ programme of the Omani Lawyers Association.
Currently in its seventh edition, the ‘Fak Khorba’ programme has been a bridge to freedom for thousands of citizens who fell into some financial commitments beyond their capacities.
“Thousands of individuals and their families have been able to secure their acquittal from minor financial disputes that landed them behind bars over the past seven years,” said Mohammed bin Ibrahim al Zadjali, Chairman of Omani Lawyers Association and Member of Majlis Ash’shura from Batinah region.
This year the number, of those who benefited after over the last two weeks of Ramadhan, reached 295 cases, including 33 women.
“We help detainees imprisoned with non-criminal cases and those facing legal rulings issued by the various courts in the Sultanate during the blessed month of Ramadhan,” Khamis bin Rashid al Abri, spokesperson of the Association said.
“We were able to help and support these men and women with the support of the various courts of the Sultanate, Judicial Affairs Council of the Judiciary and the implementation departments of all the primary courts in the Sultanate in coordination with the Public Prosecution,” adds Al Zadjali.
Dr Hamad bin Hamdan al Rubaie, representative of the Wilayat of Ibri in the Majlis Ash’shura emphasized that the total amounts paid by the initiative for the insolvent since its inception until the current year exceeded one million Omani Rials.
He explained that the most prominent individual contributions this year was a donor who helped free all the prisoners convicted for minor financial offences in Al Dhahirah Governorate for the fourth time in a row, and individuals in the WhatsApp group named ‘Together for Oman’ contributed to the payment of funds, in addition to charities that also played a role in collecting funds from individuals for the initiative.
Al Rubaei stated that the lowest amount of debt paid through the initiative this year was RO 140, and last year RO 70 was paid for a student who was caught up in a financial issue against whom a detention order was issued.
Al Rubaie called various institutions and individuals in the country to support the initiative and contribute to freeing prisoners who are held legally liable to pay back different sums.