Malawi President Dr Lazarus Chakwera has pardoned 499 prisoners as a way of decongesting prisons amid novel coronavirus pandemic that has killed over 150 people in the country.
Malawi Prisons have so far confirmed 134 cases of COVID-19 forcing the president to make the decision.
Chimwemwe Shaba who is the spokesperson for Malawi Prison Service (MP) says the president will pardon prisoners with minor crimes, those chronically ill and those with good manners among others.
The pandemic has also hit police cells in the country.
Recently, four suspects at Nkhotakota Police Station tested positive for COVID-19, Nkhotakota Police Station Public Relations Officer Williams Kaponda said.
Kaponda said the suspects were transfered to Maula Prison where there is an isolation centre.