The government continuously provides financial resources to prisons for the purchase of food for inmates across the country.
Speaking when he officially received seeds worth K1 million from one of the country’s seed companies, Malawi Prisons Chief, Kennedy Nkhoma, expressed concern that the country is still struggling to achieve food security despite having adequate manpower in form of inmates.
According to Nkhoma, prisoners could play a vital role to make the country become food secure if given enough land and support to farm.
This program would also be part of reforming them so that they become more productive once released from prison.
Nkhoma cited Namibia where about 3,000 Prisoners are being used as a reliable manpower to cultivate a variety of crops, mainly for consumption amongst its population.
For example, Maula Prison was intended to house 800 inmates but now holds approximately 1,805 inmates, all but 24 of them men.The country’s prisons are estimated to exceed their capacity by 200%
The new Mzimba Prison has conditions high above those of many other Malawian prisons, with beds and comfortable mattresses.
Prisoners get food three times a day and have well-ventilated cells. The facility also provides services and activities for prisoners, such as teaching them skills so they go back into society as law-abiding citizens.
The Malawi Prison Service plans to open additional prisons in Rumphi Mchinji and Salima.