Inmate-made goods a big hit at expo

National 1 minute, 34 seconds


PRODUCTS made by inmates were well-received during a three-day expo that saw some items being sold out.

Mohd Hilmi Wasli, head instructor of the Prisons Department’s Vocational Training Section, said the expo was a big hit since the first day at Giant Hypermarket.

“Even during the first day, some of our items were already sold out and we had customers placing more orders for the sold out items. Alhamdulillah, the response was quite encouraging up until the very last day (yesterday),” he said in an interview.

Ironing boards, wooden benches and furniture as well as barbecue grills were among the bestsellers at the expo, with sales almost hitting $4,000, said Mohd Hilmi.

The expo showcased handmade products by inmates as well as agricultural products from the department’s Vocational Training Section.

“Our main objective is to highlight these products made by inmates and showcase their talents to the public so that once they are released, they know they can venture into these fields as there is a demand for it,” he said.

He added that most of the wooden furniture and handicraft products such as rihal (Al-Quran stands), boats, house replicas, and bird cages were brought from the Jerudong Prison.

Meanwhile, products made out of metal such as ironing boards, barbecue grills and clothes’ stands came primarily from Maraburong Prison whilst the Women’s Prison marketed nursing covers, embroidered headscarfs and handbags.

One of the customers, Rosidah came all the way from Kuala Belait to visit the expo and was impressed with the quality and uniqueness of the items sold.

“The items here are made out of good quality with reasonable prices. It’s a good initiative by the Prisons Department not just to support our local economy but also in giving moral support to the inmates,” she said, adding that she hopes the expo will be held in other districts.

The Brunei Times