Authorities at the Malawi Prisons Service – MPS are engaging mobile service providers to consider blocking their networks in the reformatory facilities.
According to the officials, the move is meant to curb growing incidences of mobile fraud in the country, whose core perpetrators are reportedly prisoners despite laws prohibiting cellphones among inmates.
Debate is high among the citizenry on whether inmates are allowed to have cellphones or not.
A number of unsuspecting citizens have been getting calls from the purported inmates who pretend to be Airtel or TNM mobile money team and ask for the targets’ details that may help them get access to the subscriber’s mobile wallets.
The development has seen those unaware, being robbed f thousands of kwacha from their mobile money wallets.
In his response to the growing debate on the legality of allowing the possession of phones among prisoners, spokesperson for the MPS Chimwemwe Shaba says, “Cellphones are one of prohibited materials in our prison formation and this is why we conduct routine search regularly to retrieve all the items deemed prohibited.”
Shawa has since described as unfortunate, the behavior of some of their officers who connive with inmates by letting in non-allowed materials like cellphones.
“Much as we have hardworking officers who value ethics we know there are some unscrupulous individuals who deliberately ignore such. As authorities we know this, and some have been dismissed and some are being investigated by the Malawi Police Service. ” Added Shaba.
Mobile phone operators have intensified campaign in raising awareness to the citizenry on matters to do with mobile fraud.