Ndebele visits prisons in Cuba

2012-10-02 21:54

Johannesburg - Correctional Services Minister Sibusiso Ndebele is visiting prisons in Cuba, Brazil and the United States to develop best practice models, his office said on Tuesday.

Ndebele, supported by national commissioner of his department, Tom Moyane, were in Havana, Cuba, on Monday and Tuesday to study and observe prison facilities, spokesperson Logan Maistry said in a statement.

"Without losing its rigour and discipline, the Cuban authorities have acknowledged that the Cuban penal system no longer relies on the simple 'behind bars' mentality, but they have exploited the advantages of dozens of courses for different educational levels."

More than 95% of Cuban prisoners learn at least one skill by the time they are released, and 51% earn an educational qualification.

During their jail terms, inmates also rebuilt state buildings such as school and hospitals.

Last week, Ndebele met director general Augusto Eduardo de Souza Rossini of the Brazilian penitentiary department where that country's programmes on reducing prison time through labour and reading were discussed.

"In Brazil, prisons are offering an interesting option to select prisoners: read and write essays on works of literature, philosophy and science to reduce sentences by four days for every book completed," Maistry said.

In one year prisoners can shave a maximum of 48 days off their prison sentences.

After Cuba, Ndebele and Moyane would fly to New York.

  • Bra Tebzaah Sibilanga - 2012-10-02 22:01

    They should lock him up there.

      wesley.nel.5 - 2012-10-03 04:51

      And through the key away. With all the shat he makes, how can he still be in cabinet. Surely he must be one of JZ 30 children

  • mark.a.fysh - 2012-10-02 22:04

    As an inmate?

      teleki.maker - 2012-10-03 08:05

      Yes as an inmates.

  • teleki.maker - 2012-10-02 22:18

    Ndebele and Zuma should be locked up in Brazil and read all the books without reduced sentence.They r hypocrites.

  • boltonbarry - 2012-10-02 22:24

    I wonder if it will come to light that he actually took his wife's mothers friends cousins twice removed sister for a vacation trip with tax payers money

  • vincent.vinsaint - 2012-10-02 22:33

    Just like the late Minister Sicelo, Ndebele has got a mistress in 1 of the prisons he visited, maybe 1 of those drug mules. Public Protector probe this please.

  • humberto.capiro - 2012-10-03 03:12

    Ten videos smuggled out of Cuba’s biggest and reputedly worst prison, in an unusually daring operation by a dissident, show grotesquely dirty toilets, grimy walls, leaking sewage and food described as worse than “animal feed.” “Show this video to the international community, how this miserable dictatorship commits cruelties against humanity,” says the videos’ main narrator, an India citizen serving a 30-year sentence in Havana’s high security Combinado del Este prison. Havana dissident journalist Dania Virgen García, who writes the blog “Cuba por Dentro” — Inside Cuba — said the videos were shot in late January with a digital camera smuggled into the prison “so that everyone can see Cuba’s reality.” The videos — which also showed several inmates, including a U.S. citizen complaining about prison conditions — appeared to be the first ever smuggled out of Cuba’s 200-plus prisons. Their views of prison buildings matched those of the Combinado del Este prison. VIDEO #1: La cárcel por dentro - 1ra parte (The prison from inside part #1) VIDEO #10:Testimonio del reo Marcos Damián Rafael Fernández Rodríguez (cubano)- Testimony of prisoner Marcos Damián Rafael Fernández Rodríguez (Cuban man with no hands)- (Cuba) -

      jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-10-03 11:21

      Humberto.Capiro. Our minister is not interested in the truth about Cuban or South American prisons. He wanted a holiday and needed an excuse.

  • gideon.leroux.9 - 2012-10-03 08:48

    Seems like a nice holiday...

  • winifred.watson.9 - 2012-10-03 09:17

    Criminals need to be punished, even petty crimes need to be punished. Criminals in this country lead a wonderful life, the sit on their backsides watch tv have 3 meals a day and a warm and dry place to sleep in, all this at the taxpayers expense. Its time to bring back the chain gangs and to get these bastards out their slogging in the hot south african sun. When my pension runs out, guess what I am going to turn to.........its a good life. Criminals cannot be rehabilatated, maybe after they have served 25 years behind bars, they might just have woken up to the fact that crime does not pay.

  • bev.busa - 2012-10-03 10:29

    I have done prison ministry for many years and have come to realise that because children are not taught the difference between right and wrong, respect for themselves and others they grow into the horrendous criminals we have in our society. I say we need to start at ground level and make school (good, moral training with breakfast and lunch provided) from the age of 4! That way there will be at least some child training and nutrition given at a young age. This is of course in a perfect world which unfortunately we don't live in.

      loftycrane - 2012-10-06 14:40

      Yours is the only sensible post I've read on this page Bev. We need to address sources of the problem whilst dealing with current criminality.

  • jacqui.daanevanrensburg - 2012-10-03 11:17

    Nice holiday, first class all the way. South American prisons are notorious for being bad, really bad. American prisons are notorious for over crowding and brutality. So how does he think of finding solutions there?. Wouldn't a country like Sweden with it's educational system for prisoners be a better choice?.

  • Clayton Richard Delport - 2012-10-03 12:53

    Wow you got to love the fact you may take someone's life and get to study free, live free bring back the death penalty

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