Prison Violence Out of Control

1 March 2013      


The IFP is extremely concerned about the increasing attacks on prison warders by inmates. The most recent attack happened in St Albans prison, near Port Elizabeth where three warders were stabbed and wounded by two inmates who attacked them with sharpened objects on Tuesday.


The IFP has previously raised this problem with the Department of Correctional Services and will continue raising it until proper solutions have been submitted to parliament by the Department. We have spoken with the Department about the mooted 7 day shift system that was agreed on by former Correctional Services Minister, the Hon. Mapisa Nqakula. We have also raised the issue with the current Minister, the Hon. Sbu Ndebele and are waiting to hear how he is going to tackle this matter.


Our prisons are already short staffed and this places the security personnel under increased risk of attack by prisoners because of the unmanageable ratio of warders to prisoners. It is the Department's responsibility to protect the lives of the prison staff and they must accordingly see to it that their warder staff compliments are increased.


Stricter control measures must also be put in place in order to safeguard the prison warders while they are looking after inmates. One prison warder cannot manage 38 inmates.


Prisoners must also be educated and made to understand that by perpetrating these kinds of criminal acts they will only be prolonging their respective stays in prison. They will also be ineligible for parole. We call upon the Department to urgently address this matter.



IFP Spokesperson on Correctional Services, Hon. Velaphi Ndlovu MP, 083 6250 0803 


IFP Parliamentary Caucus' Media Liaison Officer, Ms Boniswa Tiwe, 072 497 1252