Prison warders at Chichiri prison in Malawi’s commercial capital, Blantyre, have lit bonfires at the entrance protesting against the government’s move to exclude them from coronavirus funds.

The warders said they will not release the 184 prisoners who were recommended by the prisons inspectorate, according to the Nation Online newspaper.

The prison warders say they should be included as beneficiaries in the Covid-19 fund and be given allowances just like the police service and immigration department that have been included, according to the Nyasa Times newspaper.

A video of the warders lighting bonfires at the prison entrance was shared on Twitter:

The coronavirus fund set up by President Peter Mutharika has attracted criticism over how it is managed.

The country’s law society on Thursday added its voice to the criticism.

Malawi has 33 confirmed cases of coronavirus and three deaths.

The country was to begin a lockdown last Saturday but a court injunction ordered it be delayed by at least seven days following a complaint that not enough had been done to help those affected by the measure.