ACCORDING to the South African Prisoners Organisation for Human Rights, inmates have embarked on what they call a “nude and hunger” strike.
At least 48 prisoners held at Kutama Sinthumule Correctional Centre in Louis Trichardt, Limpopo are reportedly participating in the strike which began on Thursday.
Kutama is a private facility and is home to extremely dangerous criminals who serve maximum sentences for crimes ranging from rape to murder. The organisation told Daily Sun the convicts are refusing to wear clothes or to eat.
They want to be transferred to medium prisons.
Miles Bhudu, prisoner rights activist and spokesman for the organisation, said: “The 48 convicts all qualify to be declassified from maximum prison to a medium facility but the prison bosses are refusing to transfer them.
“They have already served a quarter of their sentences and are well behaved. Therefore, they qualify to be transferred to medium security prisons closer to their families.
“This is negligence and ignorance of their rights,” he said.
However, prison boss Lazarus Ncongwane dismissed the allegations.
“This is news to me. None of the inmates are on strike here,” he insisted.
Ncongwane said they were not involved in a transfer process.
He said only the department of correctional services could deal with transfers.