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Prisoners stand up for their rights

With permission from the Minister of Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Prison authorities in Zimbabwe have announced thar prisoners may be temporarily released to attend funerals, weddings and other important family functions.

Last year, Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS), was reminded that the Prison Act allows inmates to apply for temporary release while responding to an outcry by some people that suspected land baron Felix Munyaradzi had been seen attending a funeral during his incarceration.

Mr Collen Mavhundutse, a relative had deposed an affidavit insinuating the temporary release of Munyaradzi was a violation of the law. However, ZPCS spokesperson Principal Correctional Officer Peter Chaparanganda said:

“The organisation would like to categorically state and advise the public that Felix Munyaradzi, an inmate remanded in custody at Harare Remand Prison, was granted temporary release from prison to go and attend the funeral of his father-in-law by the Minister of Justice, legal and Parliamentary Affairs Honourable Ziyambi Ziyambi on 14 August 2020.”

After this case, several have previously benefitted in line with the provisions of the Prisons Act whenever circumstances warranted the granting of such release. The case of Felix Munyaradzi is not the only case where incarcerated inmates have been legally granted temporary release from prison.

For prisoners who know the law, requests were granted to attend weddings and funerals. They can even be released to marry their loved ones, with the minister’s permission.

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