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Dept: Pollsmoor warder attacks not due to negligence

Over the weekend, five warders were attacked in two separate incidents at the facility.

FILE: Pollsmoor prison gate. Picture: Supplied

CAPE TOWN – Pollsmoor Prison management says recent attacks on warders do not reflect the state of security.

Over the weekend, five warders were attacked in two separate incidents at the facility.

Preliminary investigations have found both attacks to be related to gang rituals.

The Correctional Services Department’s Simpiwe Xako is adamant the two apparent gang attacks were not due to a lapse in prison security.

“Pollsmoor is a highly secure facility. This is not due to negligence.”

Prison visits were suspended on Sunday after four guards were beaten with modified padlocks shortly after a shift change.

However, Sonke Gender Justice prison specialist Ariane Nevin says security is compromised by several systemic issues not unique to Pollsmoor, such as overcrowding.

“Overcrowding, together with understaffing, aggravates that problem.”

Prison management says they have sharpened searches and raids following the attacks.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)

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