KAMPALA – President Yoweri Museveni has pardoned 833 prisoners around the country.
Speaking to reporters at the Uganda Media Centre on Monday, Frank Baine, the spokesperson of the Uganda Prisons Services said the details of who is going to be released and what kind of sentences they have been serving will be communicated as of when they have worked them out.
Museveni’s move to pardon such a big number of prisoners is in line with the government’s efforts to decongest prisons which are said to be potential places for the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19).
A fortnight ago, Uganda Prisons had indicated that they had recommended to the Prerogative of Mercy committee headed by the Attorney General the release of over 2000 prisoners on minor offenses who had served three thirds of their sentences.
The constitution under article 121(4) says that: The President may on the advice of the committee [Prerogative of Mercy Committee], grant to any person convicted of an offence a pardon either free or subject to lawful conditions; grant to a person a respite, either indefinite or for a specified period, from the execution of punishment imposed on him or her for an offence; substitute a less severe form of punishment for a punishment imposed on a person for an offence; or remit the whole or part of a punishment imposed on a person or of a penalty or forfeiture otherwise due to government on account of any offence.