Government has approved general amnesty of prisoners in order to de-congest the crowded prisons.
This was revealed during the post cabinet press briefing by Information, Publicity and broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa.
“Cabinet considered and approved the proposal to have a General Amnesty as presented by the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs. Cabinet noted that the country’s prison population currently stands at 22 000 against an official holding capacity of 17 000.
“The General Amnesty which will be for certain specified categories of prisoners will de-congest the country’s prisons and alleviate challenges being experienced by the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS)” said Mutsvangwa
Justice and legal Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said the general amnesty will be effected once they identify nine categories and are targeting at more than 5000 prisoners.
“There has been an approval on the amnesty. Government is now working towards the nine categories that we have which will determine who will qualify for the amnesty.
“Our prison population right now stands at 22 000 against the 17 000 holding capacity. So we are targeting preferably getting to 16 000,” said Ziyambi.
The Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS) currently operates 46 correctional facilities throughout the country. Due to economic hardships, the prison services is facing operational challenges.