Prisoner stabs official at Joburg High Court

The Department of Correctional Services has confirmed that one of its officials was stabbed by an inmate at the South Gauteng High Court in Johannesburg on Monday.

According to the Police and Prisons Civil Rights Union (Popcru), the incident happened when the official was "single-handedly" escorting a sentenced prisoner from the Johannesburg Correctional Centre’s B Section.  

Popcru spokesperson Richard Mamabolo said the section houses maximum security offenders at the court.

Mamabolo said the official was overpowered, stabbed and then chained up by the inmate, who then attempted to escape. He was, however, soon caught by members of the public.

Department of Correctional Service spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo said an internal investigation had been launched to establish the facts around the incident.   

Nxumalo said a criminal case was also being investigated by police.

"It is thus important for the department to allow the investigators to do their work and ensure that no stone is left unturned. Correctional services has noted commentary from various voices, speculating on what could have been staffing challenges being the main sore point," he said.