KAMPALA – Activists have asked President Museveni to expeditiously assent to amendments on the law revision on penalties in criminal matters to scrap death penalty from the law books.
Parliament passed the proposal to remove death penalty as a punishment under the legal regime in Uganda.
The bill awaits President Museveni’s assenting to be the law that among others things seeks to remove the mandatory death penalty prescribed by the Penal Code Act, the UPDF Act as well as the Anti-Terrorism Act.
Human rights activists and lawyers say that the death penalty is not an appropriate punishment to curb serious crimes in Uganda.
They were speaking at the 17th commemoration of the World Day against death penalty organized by Coalition against the death penalty and hosted by Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (FHRI), activists say that there is no mathematics to accurately determine that someone prosecuted actually committed the offence due to the rampant corruption in the country.
Busiro East MP Medard Sseggona reasoned that killing a person for murder denies parties a chance reconcile.
“It is criminal to kill a person but must we lose another person?” he said.
Ssegona said that crimes are committed for different reasons like hot temper, poverty, anger and land but there is no reform process in the country.
Uganda on Wednesday 9 joined the rest of the world to commemorate the day against death penalty.
The country has 28 offences, commission of which the offender is liable to suffer death specified under the Penal Code Act, the Anti-Terrorism Act, the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces Act, and the Trial on Indictment Act which may be either discretionary or mandatory.
The Executive Director of FHRI, Dr Livingstone Sewanyana explained that death penalty is not effective punishment and deterrent measure to crime given the fact that countries that still hold it in their law books have the highest number of capital offences committed.
“As campaigners against death sentence, under no circumstances do we support crime but we are demanding for appropriate punishments that would help the country to curb crime,” Sewanyana said.