UGANDA: MUSEVENI WANTS DEATH PENALTY FOR MURDERERS
|Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni
February 23, 2015: Presidenti Yoweri Museveni asked judges to sentence murderers to death.
Opening the 17th Judgesâ Conference at Imperial Golf View Hotel in Entebbe, Museveni said judges are unnecessarily lenient with murderers and that the lighter sentences given to killers are eroding the already suffering public confidence in the judiciary.
The president cited key suspects in the recent killings of a Muslim leader Sheikh Abdu Kadir Muwaya in Mayuge district and Tito Okware, an National Resistance Movement (NRM) leader in Namayingo district who were apprehended by the police after completing investigations, but were released by courts.
âThose people who willfully kill others should be sentenced to death and hanged under the law. In Mayuge and Namayinga, people were fighting after the key suspects were hurriedly released,â he added.
Museveni noted that releasing murder suspects before spending at least 180 days on remand may force the population to turn âextra-judicial actionsâ.
âWhatâs the hurry for? Do you want some of us to turn to extra-judicial actions?â the president asked.
According to official prisons records, the last time convicts were killed by hanging in Uganda under NRM government was in 1999 when 29 death row inmates were murdered. Fourteen convicts had been killed earlier. Originally, it was mandatory for anyone convicted of a capital offence to be sentence to death.
However, the 2009 Supreme Court ruling on the constitutional court petition by Susan Kigula and 417 death row convicts left it to the discretion of the trial judge to hand down a death sentence or not after considering circumstances surrounding the commission of the offence. (Sources: newvision.co.ug, 24/02/2015)