Overcrowding: Prison boss lashes ‘inconsiderate’ families for refusing to pay relatives bail

Despite the release of 3 000 prisoners through the Presidential Amnesty last year, Zimbabwe’s prisons are still overpopulated, with the country’s correctional facilities carrying 2 382 inmates above their recommended capacity.

Harare– Zimbabwe Prison Services are battling severe overcrowding problems amid revelations that Harare Central Prison and Harare Remand Prisons are holding twice the number of their capacities.

More than 1 300 inmates are currently held at Harare Remand Prison, which has a normal holding capacity of 900 inmates.

The revelations were made by Chief Superintendent Charles Nyamasoka, Officer in Charge, Harare Remand Prison, who comically told local tabloid H-metro that people were “neglecting” their relatives, leading to the overcrowding.

“Nyamasoka claimed people who had made bail were not failing to raise bail and their relatives were not coming forward to help.

All suspects can apply for bail and the increasing number of inmates at Harare Remand Prison is a clear indication that they failed to pay bail,

We are urging people to stand with their relatives in good and bad times.

We have some white people committing crimes but their relatives quickly rescue them from being taken to remand prison by paying bail for them.

“As of today (yesterday) Harare Remand Prison has 1342 inmates awaiting their cases to be heard before the courts of law.

Similarly, Harare Central Prison, which has a holding capacity of 1470, had 2063 inmates instead, almost 700 more than it should carry.