Minister to visit execution chamber

  • Says he had to wait for new Commissioner to settle in
  • Commissioner says dept has cleared death row inmates
  • Death row inmates to make meaningful video calls to loved ones


The Minister of Defence, Justice and Security, Kagiso Mmusi, has revealed that he intends to visit the execution chamber at the Department of Prisons and Correctional Services in Gaborone in order to have first-hand appreciation of the facility.

An execution chamber or death chamber is a room or chamber in which capital punishment is carried out. The chamber in current use at maximum prisons is the second one, the first having been at the old maximum prisons.

The minister’s intended visit to the execution chamber follows revelations by the prisons department that it has cleared inmates on death row. Minister Mmusi has not toured the facility since being appointed to the cabinet and says he decided to wait for the new Commissioner of Prisons to settle in so that she may better bring him up to speed on pertinent issues when he came.

“I will visit the chamber in due course,” he told The Botswana Gazette. “My trip will cover other areas of the prisons department.

If there is anything that needs to change or to be improved, we will look into it thereafter.”

This week the Commissioner, Dinah Marathe, was telling the Public Accounts Committee that she no longer has prisoners on death row. Like everywhere else, the death penalty and how it is carried out remains a sensitive and divisive issue in Botswana.

She disclosed that her department is installing video conferencing facilities for death row inmates to communicate with their loved ones meaningfully.