Abused Prisoner to Access Treatment at Private Hospital After ZLHR’s Intervention

A PRISONER at Harare Central Prison will now access treatment at a private hospital after Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service (ZPCS) officials undertook to immediately release him under guard to access medication after he was severely assaulted by prison guards in August.

The family of Nyasha Ndangarazi, a prisoner serving jail time at Harare Central Prison was forced to file an urgent chamber application at the High Court on Monday 14 October 2019 seeking to compel ZPCS to immediately facilitate the treatment of the inmate, whose health has deteriorated after he sustained some injuries from severe assault by prison guards and is now discharging blood when he urinates, an indication of kidney problems.

In the application filed by Denford Halimani and Idirashe Chikomba of Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights on behalf of Charles Meda, a brother to Ndangarazi, the human rights lawyers argued that ZPCS authorities had disregarded directives by a prison doctor and another doctor at Harare Central Hospital, who had examined Ndangarazi and recommended that he be treated a private medical facility for urgent medical treatment.

The lawyers charged that ZPCS officials had refused to release Ndangarazi and had unjustifiably and unreasonably continued to raise internal procedures as an excuse for their failure to act promptly and thereby putting the life of the inmate as risk.

However, on Thursday 17 October 2019, ZPCS officials, who held a meeting with Halimani and Chikomba, undertook to immediately allow Ndangarazi to seek treatment at a private hospital. The undertaking by ZPCS officials necessitated the withdrawal of an urgent chamber application which had been filed in the High Court on Monday 14 October 2019 seeking to compel ZPCS to immediately facilitate the treatment of Ndangarazi.

Ndangarazi’s family will furnish ZPCS with the name of the private hospital and the name of the medical practitioners within Zimbabwe to enable the prison authorities to accompany the inmate and make the necessary security arrangements.

Source: Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights