A KwaZulu-Natal warder was stabbed five times with a sharpened bone by an inmate at Sevontein Prison, just outside Pietermaritzburg, the Witness reported on Monday.
KwaZulu-Natal correctional services spokeswoman Nokuthula Zikhali said George Diedericks was stabbed on Sunday at about 7am when prison officials were serving breakfast to inmates.
Diedericks was treated for wounds to his back and ear.
Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru) claims there are security risks due to a lack of personnel to oversee the inmates.
Popcru provincial secretary Kwenza Nxele blamed the low staff-to-prisoner ratio for the incident saying the situation has been worsened by the new shift system which reduced the number of warders further.
“Members have been complaining that they are left exposed and in a vulnerable situation. This division of the staff has left half of the staff on duty than previously,” Nxele was quoted as saying.