The country’s Judiciary has bemoaned the state of the Kachere Juvenile Centre in Lilongwe, calling it a disgrace to Malawi’s efforts to attain a better human rights record.
High Court Judge Fiona Mwale, who visited the centre on Friday ahead of this year’s Human Rights Day which falls on December 10, bemoaned the dilapidated state in which the facility is, saying it is not suitable for habitation in the modern era.
Mwale, who also chairs the country’s Child Case Review Management Board, has since reiterated calls to have the centre “seriously rehabilitated, if not be completely demolished”
The centre, said to have been constructed in the 1930s initially for remanded suspects before it was turned into a juvenile centre around 2004, has a capacity of less than 50 inmates, by design.
But according to the centre’s officer-in-charge, Ellina Bwanali, Kachere now houses around 200 young offenders.
Child Rights Advocacy and Paralegal Aid Centre (Crapac), executive director Alfred Seza-Muunika cited a time when a wall fell on some young detainees as the best to make changes.