|ZPS in dire need of funding|
|Saturday, 11 August 2012 19:37|
THE Zimbabwe Prison Services (ZPS) needs at least US$6 million every month to effectively run its correctional facilities in the country, a senior official has said.
In a recent interview, the ZPS Deputy-Commissioner responsible for rehabilitation, Rhodes Moyo, said the organisation continued to face several challenges due to inadequate funding from Treasury.
“As ZPS, we are experiencing a lot of constraints in terms of funds to sustain inmates at our correctional service centres across the country. The main challenges that we continue to face include inadequate food rations and linen for prisoners making it difficult to deliver effective service.
“We need a monthly allocation of US$6 million for us to be able to meet the basic requirement that would help improve the lives of inmates at our prisons and render quality service to the nation,” he said.
Dep Comm Moyo said they were getting inadequate funds from Government, adding that this compromised health standards in the country’s rehabilitation centres.
“Although we have qualified doctors and nurses, we however, continue to face challenges and we urge Government to give us more money so that we are able to improve on hygiene services. It should be noted that prisoners are humans and they deserve to be treated in a human way,” he said.
Dep Comm Moyo said his organisation has a food budgetary allocation of US$875 000 every month to feed prisoners.
“On paper we are supposed to get US$875 000 every month to feed inmates, but sadly we have so far been given US$898 000 covering the months of January to April, which is just equivalent to what we need on a monthly basis,” he said.
In an effort to address some of the challenges, ZPS has since come up with various income generating projects such as farming.
Dep Comm Moyo said last year they managed to produce 2 500 tonnes of maize from their fields.
He, however, said the quantities were not enough, as the ZPS requires 4 000 tonnes of maize to feed inmates in all the country’s 42 prisons.
“We have come up with projects to generate funds so that we are able to address some of our challenges. Last year we managed to produce 2 500 tonnes of maize and this year we have been affected by drought due to erratic rains,” he said.