‘Scarce resources force prisoners to go naked’

via ‘Scarce resources force prisoners to go naked’ | The Herald 7 August 2014 by Zvamaida Murwira

Inmates in Zimbabwe’s Prison and Correctional Services facilities are forced to stay naked owing to inadequate supply of uniforms, legislators heard yesterday. Zimbabwe Association for Crime Prevention and Rehabilitation of the Offender chief executive officer Mr Edson Chiota said the ZPCS was so underfunded that it was failing to procure uniforms for inmates.

Mr Chiota said this while giving oral evidence before a Senate Thematic Committee on Human Rights on the organisation’s views on the state of the country’s justice delivery system.

“There is an issue of welfare of inmates,” he said. “If people would like to make a visit, they will witness that on a number of occasions some prisoners go naked because there is inadequate resources in terms of funds sent to the prison department.

“It has become a situation where some people become uneasy when they go to prison. For example, there are sometimes when we have female officers manning male prisons and they end up seeing these inmates naked.”

Harare Metropolitan Senator Sekai Holland (MDC-T) expressed shock at the revelations.
“On the issue of naked prisoners, it is shocking that in Zimbabwe there are prisoners who are going naked,” she said. “What alliances have you made with civil society and churches to provide clothes for them?”

Bulawayo Metropolitan Senator Agnes Sibanda (MDC-T) asked if it was not feasible to allow inmates to put on their own clothes instead of prison garb.

Mr Chiota said the situation was more dire in remotely located prisons. He said members could confirm this by paying unscheduled visits to prisons.

He said they were working with churches and well-wishers to mitigate the situation.
ZPCS spokesperson Chief Superintendent Elizabeth Banda said the situation with regards to uniforms was bad.
She, however, disagreed on the use of the word “naked” in describing the conditions of inmates.

“I would say some of their clothes are torn and sometimes they put on jerseys to cover their torn clothes,”she said.
“It is also not true that there are male prison officers manning female prisoners, but we sometimes have female prison officers working in male prisons just doing administrative and clerical work.”

Mr Chiota said there was need to train judicial officers on other forms of sentencing offenders instead of committing them to prison to decongest the prison population.
He said there was need to address the plight of mothers incarcerated with their babies.

COMMENTS

WORDPRESS: 5
  • comment-avatar
    revenger-avenger 7 years ago

    Charge the prison zrp shefus with pornography. Mob justice for zpf

  • comment-avatar
    William Doctor 7 years ago

    When the British arrived, the natives were naked. Now that the British have left, the natives are naked.

  • comment-avatar
    Mukanya 7 years ago

    Re-call the reaction of a certain lawyer visiting the then incarcerated Bennett not so long ago at Mutoko rural prison.

  • comment-avatar
    JRR56 7 years ago

    I can remember before the farm invasions a White farmer has people invading his farm for firewood, breaking fences. He asked the cops what he should do. They advised him to take one irtem if clothing so they would return the next day and see the police. Front page news in the Herald was, White farmer strips people naked! His farm was taken from him and he had to asnwer to the police. Herald Journalists really need to become serious reporters and stop making this stuff up.

  • comment-avatar
    tonyme 6 years ago

    Please let me know if there is anything I can do to ask people donate even hospital uniforms they are no longer using. I am sure there are people willing to help
    if asked. You may
    contact me at the e-mail above.