Female prisoners at Maula Prison in Malawi’s capital Lilongwe have said they want more attention and support from the government and non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
The prisoners raised their concerns on Friday during this year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) celebrations held at the prison.
Particularly, the prisoners asked for school materials, toiletries, kitchen utensils and a brick fence so that they should not be seen by male inmates.
“We want to go back home as reformed citizens with skills that will enable us to do businesses. But, firstly, we need school facilities and teachers to train us,” said Edna Posiko, one of the inmates.
Another inmate, Madalo Masese, requested for a brick fence to replace the wired one that separate male and female quarters.
They also asked government to hold trials of remand prisoners that have stayed in prison for long.
Chief Commissioner of Prisons, Kennedy Nkhoma, said at the celebrations that government has already started addressing most of their concerns.
Said Nkhoma: “We have made a number of strides to improve prison services in the country. We have, for instance, built good residences for these female prisoners. Most of them are also trained with other skills like poultry.”
Unicef representative Mahimbo Mdoe, who was present at the function, said he was glad with the progress that is being made in the prison service.
Currently, there are 41 female prisoners being kept at Maula Prison. Many of the prisoners are on remand, awaiting trials for different cases, including murder.