(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) The Omani Lawyers Association (OLA) has launched a campaign to raise RO500,000 to help secure the release of 500 citizens who are in prisons for financial crimes.
This is the second time that OLA is organising such a campaign.
''Following the success of our first campaign in 2012 when we raised RO40,000, we have now embarked on a bigger campaign from which we expect to raise RO500,000.
''Our target is to help secure the release of 500 citizens imprisoned for defaulting on payments like rents and bank loans,'' Sumaiya al Balushi, a member of OLA told Muscat Daily.
The campaign will run till July 17. She said that at least 50 lawyers across the country are taking part in the campaign.
''They are approaching different companies and associations for funds. We are also writing to different organisations and the response has been good so far.
''After hearing about the cause, one company has already donated RO50,000 and this is really encouraging. We expect many more organisations and people to come forward to support the cause. We will soon approach banks, private firms, individuals and charities,'' Sumaiya said.
She said the association will also organise a public awareness programme on this issue at Muscat Grand Mall on June 26 and 27. ''The programme will be held between 5pm and 10pm. We hope to reach the collection target by July 17 so that we can ensure the release of such prisoners before Eid al Fitr.''
After considering the humanitarian angle and its priority, Sumaiya said the association will pay a maximum amount of RO5,000 per case. ''We have to make sure that the recipient has only one case to settle. The aim is to help those who can't pay due to financial reasons.''
About the selection criteria, Sumaiya said, ''OLA will ask the legal department in every governorate to recommend a list of those prisoners who they think should avail this opportunity. After receiving the list, an OLA committee will decide the name of each recipient accordi