BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA
GOVERNMENT has been urged to look at ways to separate children from incarcerated mothers by accommodating them in child-care homes.
Midlands senator Morgen Komichi (MDC Alliance) made the call on Tuesday while debating a motion on children’s rights and welfare of babies in prisons.
“When one is in cells, they meet a lot of people that have different characteristics. We do not want children to learn from those people. A child can copy what someone else is doing. Children can adopt bad habits, and if they grow up, it is very difficult for them to change,” Komichi said.
“People in jail use a lot of vulgar language because when in cells, they behave like animals. So when a child is exposed to that, the child will learn that bad behaviour. The government should look at ways to separate children from their incarcerated mothers.”
Komichi said child-care homes should be set up to house children whose mothers are jailed for various crimes.
“I was thinking that children’s homes should be set up where those children can be raised from proper nurseries. Children should not be in jail, the perpetrator is the one that should suffer,” he said.
“It is our responsibility as leaders of government to put our heads together and make sure that we support the idea of institutions that take care of children of females that are imprisoned.”
Mashonaland West senator Priscah Mupfumira (Zanu PF) added: “The State must adopt policies and measures to ensure that in such matters relating to children, the best interests of the children are taken care of. Consideration must be given so that mothers incarcerated with children are excused from performing some routines so that they have a chance to take care of their children and ensure their interests are taken care of.”