Durban’s Westville prison inmates hospitalised after stabbing incident

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All offenders involved in the incident will be degraded and transferred to eBongweni Maximum Centre and other maximum facilities outside the region.

Prisoners at Durban Westville Correctional Centre have been hospitalised after an altercation in which an offender stabbed another inmate on Sunday, according to the Department of Correctional Services (DCS).

It has raised concern for the department as it follows an incident – which took place earlier this week – when five knives were used in the same unit of the prison.

The spokesperson for the department, Thulani Mdluli, explained that Sunday’s incident occurred as offenders were outside their cells, awaiting breakfast.

He explained that the offender had stabbed the other with a sharpened object.

“The Emergency Support Team (EST) and Dog Unit team were quick to disarm the perpetrator and two others, who were part of the incident.

“In the process of disarming offenders using minimum force, five offenders, including the victim, sustained injuries and have been transferred to an external hospital for medical attention as stated by the Correctional Services Amendment Act, No 32 of 2001 under Section C.

“After the incident, the process of serving breakfast continued as usual and regular working conditions were recuperated,” Mdluli said.

No visits are allowed at the centre due to Covid-19, “yet there are weapons found inside centres”, he added.

All offenders involved in the incident will be degraded and transferred to eBongweni Maximum Centre and other maximum facilities outside the region.

Mandla Mkabela, the chief operations commissioner, conducted an operational visit to the prison and condemned the incident.

He said the country should be focusing on Covid-19 and protecting each other to curb the spread of the virus.

“The department will not leave any stone unturned since an internal investigation has been instituted. Individuals that may be implicated by an investigation, including officials and offenders, disciplinary actions will be taken against them without fear or favour,” Mkabela said.

“We will continue to uphold our centres as theatres of operations, not as war zones, because we have to focus on providing the best correctional services for a safer South Africa,” he added.

-The Citizen

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