LINDA SOKO TEMBO writes
FROM the time, Zambia got its Independence this is the first time that more than 2,000 inmates have been pardoned on Africa Freedom Day, Prisons Care and Counselling Association (PRISCCA) has said.
PRISCA executive director, Godfrey Malembeka said as an organisation they were grateful that government had gone further to relax bail conditions for over 2000 people who were waiting for trial.
In an interview with the Sun, Mr Malembeka said against the COVID-19 pandemic this was what the country needed to hear that correctional facilities were been decongested.
Mr Malembeka said that in this era of the new paradigm shift the correctional model called for such generosity and the pardoning of 2984 inmates was a good move from government.
“We are grateful that President Edgar Lungu has pardoned the inmates because this has been our prayer and my appeal to the pardoners is that the best gift they can give the President is to stay for good outside the walls of correctional facilities even when things are difficult because of the COVID-19 among others.
“We need to reintegrate the correctional people back into society so that they can contribute to the national development,” he said.
Mr Malembeka urged traditional leaders, Members of Parliament and the churches that took time to visit the correctional facilities and preached the word of God to the inmates to assist them with shelter, cloths, and blankets among other things during this cold reason.
He said it was important for society to supplement government’s efforts after pardoning the inmates and helping them with rehabilitation and counseling.