Malawi Prison Service (MPS) Chief Commissioner Wandika Phiri says congestion in prisons across the country prevented the provision of better services to inmates in 2018.
She said government is pushing to finalise the review of the Prison Act, which will among other things, advocate noncustodial sentencing and correctional management.
She said this on Friday during the department’s end-of-year party at Machinga Teachers Training College (TTC).
The party sought to take stock of successes and challenges the department encountered in 2018 and discuss ways of improvement.
“Government is currently addressing overcrowding by providing support in construction and rehabilitation of cell blocks like the two cells with the capacity of 800 inmates commissioned at Maula Prison last year, Phiri said.
She acknowledged that in the just-ended year, the department faced numerous challenges, such as inadequate food ration and dilapidated infrastructure.
She said congestion led to provision of poor quality health services, adding that reformation and rehabilitation programmes were also a challenge.
She urged officers to maintain order and discipline in their respective duty stations and desist from commenting on sensitive security and political issues on the social media.
Speaking on behalf of the retiring officers at the event, Raphael Mshali challenged continuing and newly-recruited officers to be hardworking, disciplined and committed to serving the nation better.
The celebration was spiced up with traditional dances and comedy by Chichiri Prison inmates and a disco.