Innocent Draville, the Officer in Charge of Mbarara Main Prison says since 2014 when the plea bargain initiative started in Mbarara, a total of 1,276 capital cases have been handled and disposed of compared to the 281 petty offences noting that more efforts are needed to advocate for petty offenders to enroll for plea bargaining.
Authorities from the south western region have asked the Principal Judge
Justice Flavian Zeija to arrange for them more Plea Bargain Sessions for minor
cases that were highlighted include theft, assault, threatening violence and Trespass among others, which they say have contributed hugely to the congestion
Authority Officers made the request during the launch of a plea bargain session
on Monday at Mbarara Main Prison which was led by Justice
Flavian Zeija the Principal Judge of the High Court.
Draville, the Officer in Charge of Mbarara Main Prison says since 2014 when the
plea bargaining initiative started in Mbarara a total of 1,276 capital cases have
been handled and disposed of compared to the 281 petty offences, noting that
more efforts are needed to advocate for petty offenders to enroll for plea
He says the Plea
Bargaining initiative has encouraged more Capital Offenders to benefit than the
optimistic that by the end of the camp with the efforts put in for petty offenders
to enroll the numbers will increase. The Mbarara Main Prison currently has 2,408
inmates, that is more than six times the maximum number it is supposed to hold of 384 prisoners.
“the initiative and efforts…//
…high up there.”//
Prisons Commander South Western Region Selestine Twesigye says the plea bargain
initiative has helped the streamlining of the rehabilitation program that is
targeting convicts only.
He says that minor offenders once convicted can be shifted to other prisons to learn
trades and reduce on congestion in many prisons.
“my lord most…//
…they are here.”//
Zeija says they have started encouraging for petty offenders to enroll for Plea
Bargaining sessions to save themselves the time they spend on remand noting that it
was witnessed in the last sessions carried out.
“yes actually the…//
…during the trial.”//
Judge for Mbarara High Court Circuit Justice Joyce Kavuma says the plea
Bargain Session that has started today will handle over 100 cases of Capital
and 100 petty offenses enrolled from Kakiika and Bushenyi Prisons.
“Mbarara Prison has…//
Cue out: …capital
bargaining was primarily instituted to de-congest the backlog of both Capital and petty offence cases however, this initiative has been dominated by Capital offenders.