Stop stigmatising ex-convicts, says Lubinda


By Nation Reporter

KABWATA Member of Parliament Given Lubinda has urged Zambians to stop the stigmatisation of ex-convicts to keep them permanently out of crime as they must have been
reformed while serving jail terms.

Mr Lubinda, who recently toured Kamwala Remand Correctional Service, pointed out that because society discriminated against them, former prisoners became frustrated and sometimes returned to their old ways of crime.

He told the Daily Nation in an interview that there was need for people to show love and care towards ex-convicts, saying that anyone could come into conflict with the law and get jailed.

“The fact that some of us have never been jailed before does not mean that we are perfect. It can happen to anyone and there is no need to look down on people who have been there. Instead, let us show them love and help them to be good citizens so that they can also contribute positively to this great nation.

“Most ex-convicts go back to their old ways of crime because society has continued to be hostile towards them, so they become more frustrated and choose the wrong path,” Mr Lubinda said.

He stated that Government through the Zambia Correctional Service had not failed in its responsibility of rehabilitating and reforming convicts.

Mr. Lubinda explained that prisons in the country were no longer about punishing people but transforming offenders to useful citizens.

This was why Government decided to change the name of the Zambia Prisons Service to Zambia Correctional Service.

“Gone are the days when prisons were for punishing people. You don’t transform people by punishing them. Government has changed the name of the Zambia Prisons Service to Zambia Correctional Service and the name of people who are jailed has also changed from prisoners to correctional inmates because they are there to be corrected and not punished,” he said.