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Ilanga Provincial Newspapers

Government prioritise welfare of inmates


Government has pledged to improve the welfare of inmates and modernise prisons across the county, the Deputy Minister of Justice Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Advocate Nobert Mazungunye, has said.

Advocate Mazungunye was touring Gwanda prison facilities last week, when he said that the increase of funding in the 2024 budget will address these issues.

Mazungunye said a new smart Gwanda prison is on cards.

“The Government is working round the clock to construct a new smart prison here in Gwanda. We are positive that the inclusive budget will support all the projects and ensure that the welfare of both inmates and correctional officers is prioritised,” Adv Mazungunye said.

Gwanda inmate, Royas Ndlovu, appreciated the proposed building of a smart prison, as he pointed out the predicaments they face.

“We are overcrowded here, we are afraid of both skin and water-borne diseases. If a new prison is constructed it will reduce congestion and I hope there will be a sigh of relief in this area.
“I also want to plead for a warm welcome when we reintegrate with the mass. We are being corrected here and we surely deserve a second chance,” he said.

Gwanda prison is currently overcrowded, mostly with youthful inmates.

The prison boasts of a thriving goat, pig and cattle projects, run by inmates. There are plans to invest in fish farming.

Speaking during the tour, Zimbabwe Prisons Correctional Services (ZPCS), Commissioner-General, Moses Chihobvu, said the inclusive budget has increased funding for the correctional services.

“The budget has increased funding to ensure that correctional officers get accommodation and other necessities. We are happy that inmates do a number of self-sufficient projects here in Matabeleland South. The funding will enhance production and efficiency to these projects,” said Chihobvu.

ZPCS has done away with punitive and repressive way of dealing with inmates. They have adopted a new norm of dealing with inmates; which is correcting and rehabilitating inmates to be responsible citizen when they reintegrate with the society.

Zimbabwe has a total of 46 Prisons, two of them being for female prisoners only.

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