Ex-Convict Sues Prisons Chief

A former convict has sued government over the alleged murder of two inmates by warders in Kirinya prison in Jinja.

As respondents, Yahaya Lukwago has listed the commissioner general of prisons, Dr Joseph Byabashaija Internal Affairs Minister Aronda Nyakairima, and Attorney General Peter Nyombi. In his suit, filed at the High court on July 11, Lukwago claims that convicts Abdu Karim and Felix Aroronga were tortured to death by prison warders.

“The deceased persons died of unnatural death and as a result of the violent torture by prison warders for whose acts the respondents are vicariously liable,” the plaint reads.

Through Rwakafuzi and Company Aocates, Lukwago says that on February 11, 2004, he was jailed for aggravated robbery. While serving his sentence, Lukwago was transferred from one prison to another, including Kirinya.

At Kirinya, Lukwago says, he and fellow inmates, who included Karim and Aroronga, were often tortured by about 20 warders. He says they were kicked, punched and battered with batons, four times a day, for over 40 days.

“That I vividly remember that on August 7, 2009, while in prison, while the warders were beating us with batons, Karim started bleeding profusely through the mouth and nose he fell down and died moments later,” Lukwago says in his affidavit.

He adds that on October 25, 2009, Aroronga, who had been brought to the prison the previous day, was also beaten to death. Aroronga had reportedly been accused of escaping from Arua prison during the tenure of James Aiso, who had since become the officer in charge of Kirinya prison.

Lukwago, who was released on June 20, 2014, says prison authorities have denied torturing the deceased persons to death. They insist the two are still alive. Subsequently, he wants court to compel the respondents to institute a commission of inquiry into the deaths of Karim and Aroronga, since their demise was not natural.

“That I have been informed by my lawyers, which information I verily believe, that the above acts constitute acts of extrajudicial killings by prisons authorities and as such ought to be investigated and readdressed by this honourable court,” Lukwago affirms.

The respondents have been given 15 days to file their defence.

Source : The Observer

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