THE Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services (ZPCS) is set to second 30 officers to Equatorial Guinea where they will provide training to that country’s correctional services department, Newzimbabwe.com has learnt.
A highly placed official at the ZPCS headquarters said the selection process has been rocked by corruption and nepotism with some senior officers either selecting themselves or their relatives and close allies.
“Since last week when the announcement was made we are seeing names of very senior officers who are not instructors imposing themselves on the list of genuine instructors. This is because of allowances they will be getting from the mission. But what is surprising is that it has been clearly stated that those going should be instructors,” said the source.
Those who will be going according to the official will be getting not less than $2000 in allowances.
Like any other civil servants Prison guards are earning not more than $400 a month and going to the oil rich country would be a blessing.
The official said the decision to post instructors came after the Equatorial Guinea government had initially requested to send its prison officers to Zimbabwe but could not afford the quotation it was given for the service.
“We are told that at the moment that country has no trained prison officers. Their jails are guarded by police and the army officers hence the decision to invite Zimbabwe to provide training for their prison officers,” added the official.
ZPCS spokesperson Elizabeth Banda could not be reached to ascertain the dates of departure for the instructors.
Zimbabwe deployed members of the National Army to provide security at the just ended AFCON games the country was hosting.
Relations between Equatorial Guinea and Zimbabwe were strengthened in 2004 after the Zimbabwe security forces arrested a group of mercenaries who were on their way to topple President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo.