Zambia

CountryZambia
Ministry responsible
Ministry of Home Affairs
Prison administration
Zambia Prisons Service
Contact address
PO Box 80926, Kabwe, Zambia
Telephone
+260 977 975 971
Fax
+260 5 223916
Website
Head of prison administration (and title)
Percy Chato
Commissioner of Prisons
Prison population total (including pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners)
25 000
at May 2017 (Zambian Human Rights Commission)
Prison population rate (per 100,000 of national population)
160
based on an estimated national population of 15.58 million at May 2017 (from United Nations figures)
Pre-trial detainees / remand prisoners (percentage of prison population)
23.2%
(17.9.2013)
Female prisoners (percentage of prison population)
1.0%
(17.9.2013)
Juveniles / minors / young prisoners incl. definition (percentage of prison population)
2.5%
(17.9.2013 - under 18)
Foreign prisoners (percentage of prison population)
2.1%
(2.12.2005)
Number of establishments / institutions
90
(2016 - 54 standard prisons, 36 open-air prison farms)
Official capacity of prison system
8 250
(May 2017)
Occupancy level (based on official capacity)
303.0%
(May 2017)
Prison population trend
(year, prison population total, prison population rate)
1998 14,318 146
2000 11,999 116
2002 13,173 123
2005 14,207 124
2008 15,000 120
2010 16,666 128
2012 c 17,000 c 124
2014 17,160 118
2016 19,000 124
1998 14,318 146
2000 11,999 116
2002 13,173 123
2005 14,207 124
2008 15,000 120
2010 16,666 128
2012 c 17,000 c 124
2014 17,160 118
2016 19,000 124

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Pre-trial/remand prison population: trend

The table below gives an indication of the recent trend in the pre-trial/remand prison population. The final row shows the latest figures available.

It consists of the number of pre-trial/remand prisoners in the prison population on a single date in the year (or the annual average) and the percentage of the total prison population that pre-trial/remand prisoners constituted on that day.  

The final column shows the pre-trial/remand population rate per 100,000 of the national population. 

                                                 ZAMBIA

Year

Number in
pre-trial/remand
imprisonment

Percentage
of total
prison population

Pre-trial/remand
population rate
(per 100,000 of
national population)

2000
2005
2007

3,054
5,060
8,164

25.5%
35.3%
54.8%

29
43
66

2013

3,950

23.2%

28

It should be noted that the number of pre-trial/remand prisoners fluctuates from day to day, month to month and year to year. Consequently the above figures give an indication of the trend but the picture is inevitably incomplete.

The pre-trial/remand population rate is calculated on the basis of the national population total. All national population figures are inevitably estimates but the estimates used in the World Prison Brief are based on official national figures, United Nations figures or figures from other recognised international authorities. 

Female prison population: trend

The table below gives an indication of the trend in the female prison population. The final row shows the latest figures available.

It consists of the number of female prisoners in the prison population on a single date in the year (or the annual average) and the percentage of the total prison population that female prisoners constituted on that day. 

The final column shows the female prison population rate per 100,000 of the national population.

                                                    ZAMBIA

Year

Number of
female
prisoners

Percentage
of total
prison population

Female prison
population rate
(per 100,000 of
national population)

2005

237

1.7%

2.1

2013

168

1.0%

1.2

The number of female prisoners fluctuates and so the above figures give an indication of the trend but the picture is inevitably incomplete.

The female prison population rate is calculated on the basis of the national population total. All national population figures are inevitably estimates but the estimates used in the World Prison Brief are based on official national figures, United Nations figures or figures from other recognised international authorities.

(If the rate were calculated on the basis of the number of females in the national population it would of course be approximately double the figure in the final column).

Prison population total
Prison population rate