The Herald reports that Senator Sithembile Mlotshwa (MDC-T) says prisoners can go without food and clothing as long as they satisfy their sexual needs. We know a few people who will agree with this concept.
The Matobo senator also urged the Government to forgo clothes and food and provide “sex gadgets” in prisons to curb homosexuality. Although this really sounds like a Saturday afternoon kitchen tea-party joke she actually made the remarks when the Justice and Legal Affairs Ministry officials appeared before the Parliamentary Thematic Committee on Gender and Development on Monday.
She however raises a pertinent point regarding prisoner’s health. The prevalence of HIV and AIDS in prisons and it is common knowledge that homosexuality is rife within the prison system. These issues present a moral and to some extent political dilemma to prison bosses in Zimbabwe.
Apart from the complex issues surrounding homosexuality a solution would be to allow prisoners to have conjugal visits. These sexual visits might help reduce the spread of diseases. Conjugal visits are scheduled extended visits during which inmates are permitted to spend several hours or days in private, with a legal spouse.
At this point the proposals made by the good senator are best described as wishful thinking given the fact that the prison services cannot pay for its fumigation bill.