Maximum prison security breached

2015-05-29 06:00
A correctional service member searches notorious criminal and jail-breaker, Annanias Mathe’s, cell.PHOTO: khaya magenu

A correctional service member searches notorious criminal and jail-breaker, Annanias Mathe’s, cell.PHOTO: khaya magenu

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THE discovery of six sim cards, bones and illegal beer in one of the most secure C-Max prison cells in the southern hemisphere is worrying prison authorities.

The Ebongweni C-Max Prison is considered the home of violent criminals and those who create problems in other prisons, but surprisingly correction service members and police confiscated a number of illegal items in the cells.

The department is to launch an internal investigation after they raided the prison on Friday evening to see how this could have happened.

KZN Correctional Services regional head Nombuso Mkhize said the discovery of the sim cards is worrying because it means that prisoners have access to cellphones, which is a serious breach of the high security prison.

“Although we have not confiscated any illegal weapons, we are going to launch an investigation to get to the bottom of who is involved in smuggling illegal material­ into the prison,” said Mkhize.

The search was conducted by warders and the Kokstad SAPS dog unit.

The three-hour raid started with high-risk offenders, including notorious criminal and jail-breaker Annanias Mathe, who attempted to escape last year, but failed.

Members searched through the thin mattress on the cement block which they use as their bed. Prison warders and police made every inmate move out of their cell and kneel outside their door, with their hands behind their head.

Mathe, kneeling outside his cell, told the Fever that he does not want to be in prison anymore especially in KwaZulu-Natal or the Western Cape. He said he wants to move to another province. He complained that when his parents from Mozambique­ transfer money to him he usually gets it late so he wants to move to another prison.

Inside Mathe’s cell members found a Bible. He claims he is “born again”.

“I am born again and I promise I will never do outside what I have done in the past.”

The Ebongweni prison has CCTV cameras around the prison however, inside the gates are controlled by remote control

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