Harare Central Prison has released some 174 prisoners under different categories under the Presidential amnesty, bringing to 347 the number that has been released at Harare Central Prison this month.

The Harare Central Prison opened its doors late this afternoon to release inmates who have benefited from the amnesty granted by the President Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa.

Mr Beroti Max Sibanda who was serving a life sentence for the murder of his father was among the first to test freedom after serving for 20 years.

He was incarcerated at age 30 and he is now 54.

He told waiting journalists that he was clueless where he can find his relatives after release and a member of the Prison Fellowship was waiting to ferry him to their halfway home in Waterfalls.

He said his children were being looked after by a brother in Botswana.

We also spoke to some youngsters who were full of gratitude to the Head of State and they said they would not repeat their offenses.

The mothers who were waiting patiently outside the gates were overjoyed, while others could not say a word but just shed tears.

Under the amnesty between 3 000 and 4 000 prisoners are expected to be released and 534 of them are expected to come from Harare Central Prison.

The amnesty is expected to go a long way in reducing overcrowding in the country’s jails which have a carrying capacity of 17 000.