Key findings of NICRO’s report: The State of South African Prisons


The National Institute for Crime Prevention and the Reintegration of Offenders (NICRO) has recently released a research report entitled ‘The State of South African Prisons’.

The report analyses prison trends and statistics from 2008 to 2013 with a focus on prison population, length of sentence, budget allocations as well as access to basic health care and education.

Key findings of the report:

  • The majority of sentenced offenders are serving sentences for aggressive crimes
  • 52% of sentenced offenders are serving sentences of 10 years or less
  • Foreign nationals only make up 4% of the total sentenced prison population
  • 98% of sentenced offenders are male
  • Between 2012 and 2013, 21% of sentenced offenders attended formal education
  • There are 208 offenders per social worker
  • There are 1 565 offenders per psychologist
  • There are 227 offenders per educator
  • Over the past four years, incarceration costs have received an average of 54% of the total budget, with rehabilitation, care and social reintegration receiving 5%, 9% and 4% respectively

Read the full report here

Read NICRO’s statement on the release of the report here

Read ‘Nicro report damns prison system’, an article published in The Star today


About witsjusticeproject
The Wits Justice Project combines journalism, advocacy, law and education to make the criminal justice system work better for all.

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