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On Average, Government Spends 25 Corbobas A Day To Feed Prisoners

Within the priorities of the Ministry of the Interior, it is expected that the budgetary allocation for the daily food of prisoners in this 2019 will reach 25 córdobas.

You would think i must be costing the government of Daniel Ortega a pretty sum to feed the thousands imprisoned for protesting against the government. The reality, however, not so much.

Relatives of the students of León, political prisoners of the dictatorship of Daniel Ortega, waiting outside the Courts of Managua. La Prensa / Martha Vasquez

According to a report in La Prensa, a prisoner in Nicaragua if fed with less than a dollar a day.

This year, the Ministry of the Interior (Migob) expects to allocate, on average, up to 25 córdobas a day for food for prisoners. The current exchange rate is 32 córdobas to one US dollar.

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This is one of the “strategic priorities” of Migob established in the Medium Term Budgetary Framework 2019-2022.

“Continuing to improve the food standard for prisoners in the country, increasing the average daily food standard for 2019 to C$25,” the document said.

This improvement is expected to reach up to forty córdobas in the following years: thirty córdobas in 2020, 35 córdobas by 2021 and forty córdobas by 2022, stipulates the Migob.

For the legal advisor of the Permanent Human Rights Commission, Pablo Cuevas, this allocated for food is “unreal”, almost “ironic”, taking into account the cost of living, and what little you can buy with 25 córdobas.

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“It is the responsibility of the State to ensure their rights (of prisoners), basic rights, such as the right to health, to food, and with 25 córdobas you cannot even (maintain) a precarious diet, and being poorly fed logically there will be a deterioration in their health,” said Cuevas.

Last April, the prisons of the country began to be filled with political prisoners resulting from the protests and the crackdown by the Ortega regime.

Relatives of these prisoners denounce a series of rights violations, among them, they do not have the same benefits as common criminals, who have access to electric stoves to prepare their own food, for example.

The low spending for feeding prisoners is not a new issue. In 2002, the government assigned 6 córdobas for the daily meals of the prisoners, increasing to 25 córdobas in 2019, but it is still minimal.

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