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Family wants answers about inmate's death

By unknown | Apr 19, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Mhlaba Memela

Mhlaba Memela

The family of a prisoner who died after recently being stabbed at the Waterval Prison in KwaZulu-Natal want answers from the Department of Correctional Services.

Thamsanqa Dladla, 27, from Inanda, north of Durban, died at Durban's Chief Albert Luthuli Hospital after being stabbed when violence broke out among inmates. He was due to have been released next week.

It is alleged that prison warders applauded while inmates fought and did nothing to stop them.

Khalathi Dladla, Dladla's mother, said the first she heard of her son's death was a week after he died.

"I did not even know he was in hospital or that he had been stabbed.

"The prison officials failed to inform me of his injuries. No one told me about his death for a week," she said.

Dladla said the family would take the matter further after her son's funeral.

The South African Prisoners' Organisation for Human Rights (Sapohr) said Dladla's death sent a clear message to the public that prison authorities were failing in their goals of rehabilitating inmates.

The department of correctional services in KwaZulu-Natal said a statement would be released soon.

Meanwhile, correctional services committee chairman Dennis Bloem and the chairman of the select committee on security and constitutional affairs, Kgoshi Mokoena, will visit the Krugersdorp Prison today.

This follows the arrest of six warders after they allegedly assaulted three prisoners during a gang fight.

The three inmates died in hospital on Saturday night.


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