Govt to install CCTV in prisons in move to control criminal incidents

27May 2020
Henry Mwangonde
The Guardian
Govt to install CCTV in prisons in move to control criminal incidents

​​​​​​​THE government has embarked on an initiative to install detectors and Closed-Circuit Television Cameras (CCTV) to identify and control criminal activities in prisons across the country, the National Assembly heard here yesterday.


The ministry of Home Affairs said in a written response to a question by special seats Member of Parliament Rukia Ahmed who wanted know the government’s plan to control crimes in prisons.

The MP had in her principal question asked what the government was doing to tame the matter.

The ministry admitted that it was true that at times there are incidents of law breaking in prisons ranging from trafficking, entrance of illegal products and materials in prisons and uncalled for use of force to prisoners by wardens.

Others according to the ministry include prisoners trying to escape, exchange of obscene language, damage of prison properties against rules put in place.

The ministry also listed down a number of laws that has been put in place to facilitate the operation of prisons in the country including The Prison Act of 1967, The Prisons Service Regulations of 1997, The Prison Offences Regulations and the Prisons Standing Order of 2003.

“These laws and guidelines have enlisted the kind of offences, actions to be taken against a warden or prisoner upon confirmation that he conducted the offences,” the ministry said.

Criminal incidents in prisons have continued to occur for years in the country with an example of a recent incident where two remand prisoners and one prisoner at Butimba Central Prison in Mwanza City lasts month were killed after they allegedly attempted to escape.

In 2005, at least 15 prisoners sentenced to death in the main Ukonga maximum security prison in Dar es Salaam, started a hunger strike protesting about their harsh prison conditions.

 The inmates reportedly were protesting against a poor prison diet and being severely beaten whilst being held in overcrowded prison cells.