TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Christians and Catholics who are serving time in jail have been given remission on Christmas Eve. The Law and Human Rights Ministry decided to shorten the prison terms for 11,232 inmates, of which 160 will be released on Christmas Day.
"The special remissions are given to Christian prisoners who have served at least six months of their sentences, showed good behavior, and participated in the counseling programs provided by the institutions they are held in,” the ministry’s director general of correctional services Sri Puguh Budi Utami said in a press release, Monday, Dec. 24.
Law and Human Rights Yassona H. Laoly said the remission will hopefully motivate the former convicts to rehabilitate themselves and immediately return to their lives as functioning members of the society.
"This Special Remission is a manifestation of the Government's reward for prisoners who are celebrating their religious holidays," Yassona said.
Additionally, remissions save the state budget. “This year, the Christmas remission helps save the state budget Rp4.76 trillion,” Sri said.
Sri continued that sentence cuts will also reduce overcrowding in penitentiaries, as well as increase obedience and discipline among inmates. She asserted that the remission is granted using an open, fair, and non-discriminative method.
“There were no special treatments. Every prisoner deserves a sentence cut as long as they meet the requirements stipulated by law,” she remarked.