Whether or not they are fiddlers on the roof, let’s just leave these jailbirds where they are

Alf is inclined, on occasion, to toss advice when obviously it is needed for the benefit of the good people of the Manawatu, which happens to be just over the hills from his home in Eketahuna.

Today is such an occasion.

The prompt for his intervention is the news (here) that prison authorities are planning how to respond to two inmates who are refusing to come down from the roof of Manawatu Prison after staying there overnight.

Planning how to respond?

Dammit, the response is obvious.

You do nothing.

Here’s the situation –

The prisoners are understood to have climbed onto the roof yesterday afternoon and remain there this morning.

“There is no possibility of the pair escaping, nor any danger to the community and prison authorities are considering their next move. Ensuring the safety of both staff and prisoners is of paramount importance,” said Manawatu Prison manager Peter Howe.

Dunno what the safety of the prisoners has got to do with it.

They got themselves up there.

They can get down – and will – when they are ready.

Meantime, just ensure they are not provided with any home comforts, such as food or drink.

Fair to say, this is what the prison bosses might have in mind, but –

Due to security reasons details of the planned response would not be made public at this stage, he said.

If the buggers causing the trouble are up on the roof and can’t do any harm, of course, there should be no need for the cops to be involved.

They could go and do some proper policing work somewhere, such as catch a few more criminals for bringing before the courts to be banged up – perhaps in this same prison.

Alas, the cops have other ideas.

Police have set up cordons and prison staff have increased patrols around the perimeter of the prison.

Alf was thinking about going home via the Manawatu, so he could take a butcher’s at whatever is going on.

But he has decided not to bother, because –

It is understood the prisoners cannot be seen from the road.

Another thought: who are they?

A prison spokesman would not identify the prisoners or say what they were in custody for.

It can’t be Taito Phillip Field, because he was released.

Graham Capill was set free, too.

Alf is aware of some other politicians being banged up now and again, and – come to think of it – is surprised that many more of the scoundrels aren’t doing time.

Maybe the two on the roof are in for fraud.

If so, we have the makings of a splendid musical.

Let’s call it Fiddlers on the Roof.


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