By Josephine Mugiyo, Diplomatic Correspondent
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has challenged the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service (ZPCS) to shun corruption and defend the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.
He was speaking at the ZPCS pass-out parade at Ntabazinduna Training Depot near Bulawayo this Monday.
The pass out parade saw 771 students graduating and that number included those from the San community in Matabeleland North province.
“In the spirit of leaving no one and no place behind, it is impressive that some of the graduands of this pass out parade were drawn from the San community. In addition the inclusion of a significant number of women on the ZPCS recruitment, training and staff development programmes is commendable,” said President Mnangagwa.
The graduating class received lectures on constitutionalism, human rights, gender as well as drugs and substance abuse, with the President saying the curriculum is meant to equip them to deal with emerging complex issues.
“The mutually beneficial and cooperative approach bolsters the effectiveness of our correctional services in bridging the gap between the offender, society and our quest to attaining sustainable development. This is more important as the ZPCS is driven by the dictum for the incarceration and rehabilitation of offenders and their successful re-integration into the society.“
President Mnangagwa also exhorted the ZPCS to ensure productivity on the land they are utilising.
“On the agriculture front and other incoming generating projects, I urge the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Service to fully utilise its prison farms, water bodies and an array of agriculture equipment in order to produce enough and also achieve self-sustainability. Given the support my government has rendered to you, I expect improved production,” he said.
The President also spoke on the importance of ensuring peace and security prevail as well as safeguarding the country’s independence.
“Be loyal, patriotic, disciplined, professional and dutifully uphold the precepts of yours organisation’s mandate. It is your duty and responsibility to always defend our independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity, country, image and interests. Your conduct in every situation must never demean the security ecosystem,” said the President.
Loyalty, patriotism and serving national interests are some of the key tenets the President exhorted the new recruits to uphold.