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Wednesday 22 November 2017, 18:39 pm.
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Kingdom-O-Metre

No Sex In Our Prisons? Let's Stop The Pretence
I sure understand when civil servants deny given facts because they are expected to do that. In every institution there are communication channels to be followed.
By Dumi Mmualefe (GMT +2)
Mmegi Online :: Kingdom-O-Metre








This is meant to safeguard the interests and the name of the concerned institution or organisation. More often than not what is to be communicated is stage managed, rehearsed and choreographed.Those mandated to communicate do so according to a set script. This according to set institutional ethics is neither immoral nor unethical even when what is communicated is a known untruth.How many times did people deny the imminence of an action, a forced resignation, an appointment when they knew that it is nearer than around the corner? How many times have hospitals denied someone died mainly due to negligence when they know that this is indeed true.

How does the truth set free? We are told in the Bible that the truth sets free. Often we would rather opt to live with spiritual imprisonment by opting to stick to existential freedom.More often we cannot help it but opt for untruths even when they are likely to hurt others. Like I said, I understand en an employee or a civil servant denies a given truth.I understand because those superior have the sole prerogative to inform of certain things that may be above the mandate of those they supervise.But I sure do not understand when those with powers to make decisions, those almost with power to physical life and death, those who should not be fearing anything opt not to tell the truth.

We have been told there are no sexual  escapades in our prisons. Our political leadership have to date denied that there is sex taking place among some of our male prisoners. Some ex-prisoners have also joined this untruthful chorus of denial.One is left with little choice but to suspect that such ex-convicts have been diligently choreographed to dance to this disjointed and uncoordinated rhythmically and musically tasteless noise.It baffles the mind that one could serve many years in our prisons and not know of the existence of such acts.There are studies that suggest sexual abuses of the weak by the strong and powerful in some of our prisons. Stories of sex for protection and special treatment are not uncommon.

The question is why these denials and what their repercussions are or could be? Often these denials are peddled especially when some advocate for the provision of condoms in prisons.My take has always been that the provision of, or lack of thereof can neither encourage nor discourage sexual intercourse in prison.If condoms have a chance to reduce chances of infection during anal sex then I would rather they are availed.If there is a chance that the weak who are forced to have anal sex could have a chance to negotiate for safer sex then why not give them that life-saving opportunity? 

At the same time I seem to understand because, as Jimmy Cliff would sing: "Who feels it

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knows it all." It is often the children of the weak and the poor who are most likely to patronise our prisons. At times it takes a calamity at home for people to appreciate their own vulnerability and to change their mind-set.The other main problem is that we are blinded by our homophobic prejudice to the extent of disrespecting the homosexuals so much as to think sex in prison is homosexuality. It is this that makes our leadership to be this apprehensive! I have heard lame arguments to the fact that providing condoms in prisons is tantamount to giving thumps up to a criminal act, and this to them is homosexuality.

Rape by one of an opposite sex on the other does not define heterosexuality.In our law regarding rape, if one is found to have knowingly, and I add intentionally infected his or her victim with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, such will be handed an even stiffer penalty than one who for instance used a condom in the same heinous act. It goes without saying that providing condoms in our clinics, schools, toilets, work places to everyone, and that includes potential rapist cannot be seen as encouraging unlawful acts of rape!My hero of the week is none other than a colleague in God's music ministry Douglas Masuku. He is a hero because he has laid his life out there for many. His interview with my sister Kgomotso Tshwenyego gives lie to the pretences that the weak are not violated in some of our prisons.

I know of instances whereby one went to prison HIV negative only to infect a spouse once released from prison.These are realities and they have and continue to harm families. Political and even religious morality and or expediency should never take precedence over human life.The life of the poor, weak and marginalised is precious before God whose son was so vulnerable as to not even have a place to lay his head!Douglas is my hero because he has claimed back the power God gave him! By refusing to be traumatised by the man who raped him, he has taken back his power.

He has refused and put a stop to being made to feel inadequate and ashamed by one who in reality is inadequate and shameful. Should he be blessed as to read your interview I hope he comes crawling for God's forgiveness.By making his ordeal public he has taken the power away from those who made it their pastime to gossip about him as though he had called it upon himself. All these people have no hold on you my brother, you have broken their unholy hold on you and God has through you given us a message to reclaim our power, bless your soul! To God be the Glory!

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