Sexual Violence and HIV/AIDS in Prisons Vis-AVis the right to life under article 12 of the Constitution of Zambia
Yosa, Yosa Grandson
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It is a notorious fact that violence is part of life in prisons in Zambia. This includes sexual violence among prisoners despite the existence of established international standards for conditions in prisons. Acts of sexual violence perpetrated by prisoners against each other lead to prisoners contracting HIV/AIDS. This paper thus examines the impact of sexual violence and HIV/AIDS in prisons on prisoners' enjoyment of the right to life. In doing so, the paper examines the legal structure in place dealing with the protection of the human rights of prisoners. This includes domestic legislation such as the Constitution and the Prisons Act. Reference is also made to international human rights instruments to ascertain the level of protection of the human rights of prisoners on the international plane. This dissertation also looks into the consequences of sexual violence in prisons. It is enquired what factors contribute to the high prevalence of sexual violence and HIV infection rates in prisons. In doing so, this dissertation also looks at the impact of sexual violence and HIV/AIDS on the prison community in light of the extremely poor prison conditions and what impact this has on victims of sexual violence. This paper also looks into what measures are in place to deal with the problems of sexual violence and HIV/AIDS in prisons. Issues such as access by prisoners to treatment and the policy against distribution of condoms are also looked into. The paper also examines the standard used to interpret the right to life. Reference is made to decisions of international tribunals such as the European Court of Human Rights and the United Nations Human Rights Committee. The paper looks into the extent to which the right to life is upheld in relation to prisoners. In this regard, the paper examines the impact that sexual violence and HIV/AIDS coupled with the poor conditions in prisons has on the enjoyment of the right to life by prisoners. From the discussion, recommendations are made on how to address the problems facing the prison community in this regard and ultimately enhance the enjoyment of the right to life by prisoners. A conclusion is drawn as to whether the prevalence of sexual violence which leads to prisoners contracting HIV and the prevalence of HIV in light of the poor conditions of prisons in Zambia amounts to a violation of the right to life of prisoners.
SubjectSexually Abused Victims(prisons) - Zambia
AIDS disease(prisons) - Zambia
Right to life - Zambia
- Law