Tighter security for Eastern Cape prisons during festive period

Plans have been put in place to keep prisoners behind bars over the festive season.
Image: Gallo Images/Thinkstock

The department of correctional services is tightening the locks to ensure no prisoners escape during the festive period.

Deputy minister of correctional services Nkosi Phathekile Holomisa is expected to launch the Correctional Services’ Safer Festive Season Campaign at the East London Correctional Centre in the Eastern Cape on Monday.

“The national launch will showcase correctional services’ state of readiness in curbing all possible forms of security breaches that may be initiated by inmates in their desperate pursuit of breaking loose during the festive season,” Holomisa’s office said.

“The campaign will further see DCS officials doubling their efforts in addressing evolving threats, especially those involving illicit, harmful substances and assaults.”

TimesLIVE reported on a May prison break in the Eastern Cape.

During that incident, three prisoners fled from the Middledrift Correctional Centre in Mdantsane.

In February, three prison warders were stabbed by inmates at St Albans prison in the Eastern Cape.

At the time, correctional services spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said: “The incident took place around 11.30am, as officials were busy with lock-up following the mandatory daily exercise.”

Holomisa’s office said heightened security during this period was in line with government’s efforts towards a safer festive season.

“[This is] earmarked to guarantee safety for the country’s citizens and visitors,” his office said.




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