Congolese prison facts of the day

makala
Image via Chimp Reports

Some snapshots of Makala Prison, the largest detention center in Kinshasa:

  • The prison currently houses 8600 inmates in a space designed for 1500 (source)
  • Only 500 inmates have been convicted, while the rest are in pre-trial detention due to the exceptionally slow movement of the judicial system (source)
  • Most prisoners are fed by their families.  Eleven prisoners who presumably lacked family support recently starved to death after the government stopped providing food or medication from October 2019 – January 2020 (source)
  • In 2017, over 4200 inmates escaped in the country’s largest-ever prison break (source)
  • A number of inmates were granted presidential clemency at the end of 2018, but 80% of them opted to remain in at the prison because they would have been homeless if they left (source)

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