The Zimbabwe Prison Services say it is still struggling to redress challenges inherited from the colonial era such as the current type of prison cells which were constructed with the idea of accommodating black prisoners who were then regarded as third class citizens.When Rhodesians constructed prisons, what they had in mind was accommodating black offenders who had no rights at all.
Over three decades later, the structures have not changed and Zimbabwe has to deal with prison infrastructure which is below international standards.
Chief Prison Officer Priscilla Mthembo said the structures such as those at Harare Central Prison require an overhaul renovation as they do not have ablution facilities which are a requirement according to international standards.
The set back is however a result of the inadequate resources allocated to the ZPS.
However, ZPS has decided to build prisons in rural areas with one in Mazowe currently under construction.
ZPS has indicated that the new prisons which are currently being built will match international standards.