Ioannis Kapnoullas is officially taking over the role of acting prison director until June 2026, it emerged on Saturday.
He was appointed as acting prison director in January this year. He served as Famagusta’s deputy police chief and has been in the force since 1999.
The public service commission formally announced the development now that the former director Anna Aristotelous’ transfer to a different post appears to have been finalised.
She will be taking up a position heading the office of the humanitarian affairs commissioner. Aristotelous’ new position however sparked the ire of Akel, which called it an “offensive appointment.”
Akel’s frustration stems from a court decision earlier in the week, that determined human rights violations against former Defence Minister Costas Papacostas during his time in prison, as a result of the Mari aftermath.
The party said the court decision pointed towards Aristotelous “being one of those responsible for the illegal and humiliating treatment Papacostas experienced.”
Akel called on the president “to reverse this unacceptable and offensive appointment.”
The explosion took place at the Evangelos Florakis naval base in July 2011, when a large amount of ammunition and military explosives kept in shipping containers at the naval base self-detonated, killing 13 people and injuring a further 62.
A three-judge panel at the time ruled that Papacostas, then 73, was responsible for safeguarding the containers and was aware of the dangers posed by the way they had been stored, but failed to take action to prevent the explosion.
He was sentenced in July 2013 to five years in prison for manslaughter and causing death by reckless or dangerous acts.
The court ruled that while being held at Nicosia general hospital, Papacostas was not granted the right to yard time between July 2013 and April 2015, meaning he was not allowed to go outdoors at all despite recommendations from his doctors.