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Govt not doing enough to prevent COVID-19 cases, deaths in prisons – Popcru

The Department of Correctional Services on Monday said 25 new cases of coronavirus were detected across the country’s prisons.

FILE: Forty-six Correctional Services officials and 28 prisoners had died countrywide. Picture: Sethembiso Zulu/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) on Monday blamed government for not doing enough to prevent COVID-19 infections and deaths in prisons.

The Department of Correctional Services said 25 new cases of coronavirus were detected across the country’s prisons.

That brought the total number; since infections were first detected tracked in March; to 5,411.

There were over 1,100 active cases among prison workers and inmates.

Forty-six Correctional Services officials and 28 prisoners had died countrywide.

Popcru’s spokesperson Richard Mamabolo said their concerns were raised with government.

“Correctional Services has always had challenges around overcrowding and understaffing. We have tried to come up with measures to the staff complement that we have,” Mamabolo said.

Thousands of offenders serving prison time for minor crimes were being paroled to try to stem the spread of the coronavirus behind bars.

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