Parliament Report Pins Judiciary on Overcrowded Prisons

Defence Committee Chairperson, Judith Nabakooba Speaking to press at Parliament yesterday

The new report by the Parliamentary Committee on Defense and Internal Affairs on the state of Prisons in Uganda blames the judiciary for the increased congestion in prisons in the country, sildenafil housing up to 3 times their designated holding capacity.

The report presented to parliament on Thursday by the chairperson of the committee and Mityana District Woman Member of Parliament, Judith Nabakooba noted that the overcrowding in prisons relates to challenges in the Justice system.

“The Committee noted that the Uganda Prisons service currently operates 249 prisons that were designed to provide a total carrying capacity of a daily average of 16, 612 prisons. As at June 2016 the population of prisons stood at 48, 422 exceeding the available capacity by 31, 810 inmates,” Nabakooba said.

The report points out that the overcrowding in prisons relates to challenges in Justice System which include; shortage of judicial staff, prosecution officers, investigators, missing of court files and fewer High Court sessions.

“In addition, unnecessary adjournments by judges greatly negate the trial process by making cases drag in Courts for a long time,” Nabakooba noted.

The committee reported that there are 209 inmates sentenced to death over the years some of them with advanced age who also contribute to congestion in prison.

The committee recommended that government should appoint more judges or re-appoint retired judges on contract to assist in reducing the case backlog in courts and congestion in prison.

The committee report recommended that inmates whose cases lack sufficient evidence be given bail as prosecution gathers more criminality evidence.

The committee also recommends that Uganda Law Society should encourage lawyers to provide pro bono services.

The committee was informed that prisoners who are committed to high court stay on remand for longer periods ranging from 2-5 years.


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