Malawi Prison Service (MPS) has launched a mass Covid-19 testing exercise in its prisons, as Centre for Human Rights, Education, Advice and Assistance Executive Director Victor Mhango has urged the government to pardon more prisoners to create breathing space in prison cells.
“There are people who are old and are critically sick there. There are people who are there because of offences that are not serious. Let them go [home] so that we have space and prisoners live in accordance with World Health Organisation guidelines,” he said.
On the other hand, MPS spokesperson Chimwemwe Shaba said Zomba Central Prison currently has 17 people who have tested positive for coronavirus. “Out of the 17, 15 are inmates while two are warders. We are isolating them, in line with health authorities’ guidance. We are engaging district health offices to do mass testing of all prison formations in their councils.