This was said by the Public Service Commissioner, Mrs. Tendai Bare who was guest of honour at the second anniversary of the Prisons day commemorations in Harare.
Mrs. Bare said experience has shown that rehabilitation as opposed to punishment is the key to preparing the successful integration of offenders back into the society.
â€œIn the past prisons were synonymous with punishment, hard labour, ill treatment, high walls and locked doors and it was realised that such treatment only served to harden ex-convicts, creating more problems in the society hence the emphasis on corrective and transformative action as well as equipping inmates with skills that make them useful to society on release,â€ said Mrs Bare.
Commissioner of Prisons, Retired Major General Paradzai Zimhondi urged the public to support the rehabilitation programmes done by the ZPS to reform the inmates to be law abiding citizens.
â€œNow that there is a paradigm shift towards the rehabilitative approach, the doors have opened with the society now being a third player in prison activities and playing a vital role for the programme to succeed,â€ said Mr Zimhondi.
The ZPS is engaging inmates in four major components of rehabilitation which are Moral, Psychosocial, Sport and Recreation as well as Academic and Skill Training Rehabilitation.
Also present at the Prison day commemorations were the Ambassador of China, Mozambique and South Africa, permanent secretaries of government departments, Deputy Commissioner of Prisons, Prisons Service commissioners among otherÂ dignitaries.