Malawi News Agency (Lilongwe)

2 August 2014

Malawi: Njereza Cement Products Co. Donates to Mangochi Police Station

Mangochi — Njereza Cement Products Company on Thursday donated fifty bags of Njati cement to Mangochi Police Station for the construction of female and children holding cells. The donation was valued at K280, 000.

Speaking when he received the donation, Mangochi Police Station Officer - In - Charge, Elijah Kachikuwo thanked Njereza cement products for coming to the rescue of the police station, saying population growth and an influx of crime has rendered the facility inappropriate.

Kachikuwo said the station would like to undertake on the construction of modern holding cells for women and children in conflict with the law to ensure the police is in keeping with international human rights standards.

"There's an influx of women and children in conflict with the law, hence the need for a separate structure for such group of people in society since the old premises did not take such aspects into consideration," the deputy commissioner of police said.

"The new cells once completed will separate children from adults to preserve their dignity and avoid a scenario where the children would exposed to become hardened criminals, besides women are also a special category requiring special attention," added Kachikuwo.

He, therefore, commended Njereza cement products for demonstrating keen interest in security, noting that public - private - partnerships were essential in ensuring enhanced security at both community and national levels.

Kachikuwo disclosed that the initial designs of the facility were meant to have in - built toilets and bathrooms for the convenience of suspects.

General Manager for Njereza Cement Products, Grey Kamtukule said the company decided to make the donation as part of fulfilling its corporate social responsibility in the district it was operating in.

"We are making this donation against a background of a request that we received in April from the police on a project for the extension of cells for women and juveniles. We've done this cognizance of the responsibility we have to complement government in its development efforts," said Kamtukule.

Kamtukule assured that the company would continue with its support to development initiatives in a bid to assist government its drive of improving people's living standards in the country.

Chairperson of the project, James Siliya who is also Paralegal Advisory Services Institute officer in Mangochi said the initiative to have an extension of the facility was meant to bring comfort to people being kept in the cells.

"Our view is to give a decent life to people in the cells considering that a person is still deemed innocent until proven guilty before a competent court of law," Siliya said. According to Siliya, the whole construction project would require K2 million to its successful completion.

The cells were meant to hold eight people at the time of construction but now holds up to 20 or more, thereby becoming old and small.

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