Declaration of Principles

OUR BROTHERHOOD

Was established by prisoners at the Corradino prisons in 1995 to bolster justice in the Maltese islands by generating a better environment where everyone may be respected as a person, with all his rights and duties. With Daritama, in which we participate, we are voluntarily committed to improve the lives of people, particularly those trampled by others. Therefore,

WHILE RECOGNIZING THAT:

  1. Every person is good and lives his life defending his right to live;
  2. Every person is begotten with equal opportunities which, for some reason or other, are subsequently diminished;
  3. Every person naturally aspires to win back the opportunities he had when begotten while doing his utmost to defend those still in his possession;
  4. Everywhere and always every person seeks to be happy and never thinks, says or does anything with the direct intent of harming himself; and
  5. Besides the fact that any misdoing yields harm to its author, no person ever errs willingly, but always by force of others, circumstances or of his own ignorance;

AND RECOGNIZING ALSO THAT:

  1. By way of its laws, besides its main aim of preserving itself, every nation must also have the aim of safeguarding its citizens from any threat to their right to live in justice;
  2. Every citizen has the duty to comply to the legitimate laws of his nation and those of others; any violation of those laws exposes him to the punishment of the courts of justice; and
  3. A just punishment is proportionate to the offense; in its execution not only must it not diminish or utterly destroy the citizen’s future possibility of living happily whilst upholding the legitimate laws of the nation, but furthermore it must enhance that possibility;

WE DECLARE THAT:

  1. We desire the greatest good of society, for we believe that, by improving justice and the institutions safeguarding it, both our nation’s civilization and well being, and the citizens’ peace and harmony, are preserved; and
  2. We denounce all forms of crime and violence, for we believe that, while comprehending the profound reasons which may drive a person to commit a criminal offense, no-one can ever have the right to inflict pain on others;

AND HENCE:

  1. We have a mission to teach, for we believe that, with the aim of improving justice in our country, we are bound, in diverse ways, to dialogue with and learn from everyone: citizens, victims of crime, offenders of justice and administrators of the judiciary system;
  2. We are intent on improving the structures of the penal system, for we believe that, though it is from the heart of man that change is wrought, only the structures of the penal institutions (the courts, the police force and the correctional facilities) can make change tangibly possible;
  3. We support victims of crime and violence, for we believe that we may soften the pain they suffered by direct or indirect actions done against them, and pave for them a way of reconciliation;
  4. We assist offenders of justice, for we believe that we may help them recognize the harm they caused themselves and others, atone for it by doing good, and have the respect and needs they are entitled to.

ACCORDINGLY:

While willing to give everyone — citizen, victim of injustice and criminal offender — his due, always and everywhere, and thereby improving the life of people and generating for them a better environment where they will be respected with all their rights, this DECLARATION OF PRINCIPLES, we make, today, 2nd December 1997: